K-12, Student of the Month.....All As, All the time. Check.
Ivy League education. Check.
Dream Job Making Toys after Graduation. Check.
I did it. Living the american dream. Everything you are supposed to do. Promotions came, a loving husband, a house...all of the stepping stones to pure happiness were laid out in front of me. But a void laid within.
I felt haunted by the nag that there was an adventure out there. That life was more than meetings, emails, and expectations of kids. My childhood curiosity about what else is out there remained strong. My happiness surged during training sessions and judo workouts. My heart felt a bigger calling, that I was meant for more than a standard life.
I ignored the sadness.
I pushed aside the voids.
Happy Hour cured a lot. Distractions filled my time. But after years of soul squashing, I had committed myself to a cleaner lifestyle and in doing so, the voices of escape and freedom rang loudly.
So two weeks ago, I laid out my escape plan to my boss. My crazy reason for leaving a phenomenal team and fun company. Two weeks later I sit in the back of a dojo, officially homeless- with two bags, a computer, and a loving husband excited to train judo as we travel all across the globe.
The leap away from standard society was nothing but challenging. Leading up to the quit day I had been overwhelmed with self doubt, apprehension of the unknown, fear to leave the expected. Anxiety about failure seized my soul. I felt alone and horrified. Would people think I am nuts? What if I am nuts? Why don't people do this? Am I the only one who feels unfulfilled at work? The idea of leaving society's norm to chase an indescribable adventure horrified me.
But I leapt.
I had to.
I no longer wanted sadness in my soul.
You only live once. You need to be true to your heart.
And mine screamed ADVENTURE. LOVE. JUDO.
I realize now, that all of my fear and anxiety was of other opinions. Fear of not sticking to that "american dream path" of the expected. What I learned though, was that once I made the Leap, once I let the cat out of the bag, I have been surrounded by nothing but love and support. Turns out, I am nuts- but people are only excited about it.
As I head off to France for the start of my venture I urge you to be brave. If you are stricken by fear to follow what is in your heart, LEAP. Fear is natural. Fear is normal. Leaping is difficult. Surround yourself with people that lift you up and support what it best for you. Follow your heart. Be strong. Others want to see you follow your truths. It may take years to make your leap...but as soon as you do, your heart and soul will feel lightened immediately.
Believer that everyone is special.