The Beginning

“New beginnings are often disguised as painful endings” -Lao Tzu

I know. This quote sounds slightly depressing, but I saw it once and thought that at some point it would suit my life. I was right, but I never thought it would be now or in this context.

What I mean is, I always thought it would apply to something more dramatic. Something truly climactic. Like, death or a terrible break-up. And while I’ve unfortunately had to deal with more than my fair share of death lately, this quote didn’t hit me until now.

You see, I’ve finished my Master’s degree, moved out of my apartment and left the city I’ve called home for the last three years – what I would consider to be the best three years of my life because I feel like I’ve actually LIVED. I have done things besides just work, day-to-day activities and getting my Master’s degree because that’s not what’s important to me. I don’t need to be extremely successful, make a lot of money and have the “best” job in my field. I’d rather explore, get to know people and places and just experience life because, as much as I REALLY hate this stupid phrase, you only live once. And I want my life to be amazing.

So all of those silly, seemingly insignificant things I’ve been doing over the last couple of years have held more significance than getting accepted into an honor society. Things like sneaking into pools at two in the morning, going to concerts with my roommate, road-trips that always involve excessive amounts of precipitation with a close friend in my program, almost drowning while whitewater rafting or even things as simple as sitting outside in the wonderful Colorado sunshine drinking a beer, going on dates with some VERY interesting people or hiking in Rocky Mountain National Park. Or how about having one last fun night out with my friends this past Friday, throwing a Frisbee in the park and then heading downtown for a few drinks. So it’s not like I’ve done anything that fantastic, crazy or out of the ordinary. But this all has meant so much to me and really made my life that much more fantastic these last few years.

Now, I do plan on going back to Colorado, but it definitely won’t be the same. First of all, these great people who I’ve been spending my time with are leaving and taking on their own new experiences, not to mention I’ll have a real job. You know those things grown-ups are supposed to have and I was just complaining about a few paragraphs back? Yep, I’m moving up in the world. No more school for me!

So I’m just a little sad that I’m leaving something I considered to be fantastic, a life I truly loved every second of living (despite the many frustrating and disappointing moments everyone withstands), behind.

But then I remember, I’m traveling for the next two and half months! I get to have new experiences and meet new people who are even more awesome (sorry, guys) than the friends I already have. It’s going to be great. Then I get to come back and start all over again. How exciting is that?

Anyway, that’s how I feel like this quote applies to my current life.

And I can’t believe we finally made it  to this moment. It feels like just yesterday Kelly was asking me to go to Europe for the summer and my parents were telling us about our celebratory vacation plans. Now here we are, mere hours from taking off on adventure numero uno.

So come along with us on our journey! Starting this week we’ll be posting at least three times a week. That mean’s more awesome blog posts for you to read and photos for you to see 🙂 Want even more updates? Follow us on Twitter and “Like” our Facebook page (links in the upper left hand corner of our blog).

Off we go!

-Britt

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