This is it. My quit-the-rat-race date has been set. 8 months from now.
I have a Plan A, B, C and D for what I will be doing to support myself, but almost all plans include one fundamental item: autonomy. Except for plan D. Because if it all fails, I can always get another job (Plan D). Considering that my original plan was to take a year off, the fact that I am now thinking about being my own boss is pretty amazing.
This year has been especially hard on us. My hubby could have been seriously hurt in an accident and almost lost his job, we lost both our senior fur babies, we saw a close family acquaintance pass in her early 50s and 3 months later her son suddenly passed, only 1 week after turning 40. My anxiety has gotten beyond control.
I look at my life and recognize my mortality is an absolute certainty. Therefore, how do I want to exit it?
At first, I really thought I was going through a mid-life crisis (you know, soon turning 40 and all). I was missing my teens and the feelings I had then.
I felt I was becoming the most boring adult. But what I was really going through was a shift of how I saw the world. How I saw success, career, money, consumer goods, health and expectations. And I realized in all this turmoil, the one thing I wanted was time. Time to live, time to do nothing, time to choose, time that was on my terms and my choices.
I had to re-evaluate my concept of success and failure. I had to accept that my most important decisions came out of, not incessant research or preparations, but instinct.
Now, now, instinct does not mean I have not looked at the risks, pro and cons and if this all absolutely fails or if I have to change my target date (life does tend to happen with little consideration for our plans).
In the past 7 years, I have diligently saved money and paid off my debt. I have a low expense lifestyle. I have a spouse who shares similar views and desires (it is easier to change things as a team). I have saved about 2 years worth of expenses.
I try not to think about it too much. Otherwise, I will tell myself how absolutely insane it is too leave a good paying job. But recently, when I was listening to a CD about our Declaration of Independence, that this feeling really hit me. The most unalienable rights I can grant myself are exactly the ones I feel and want in my heart:"Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness". I want to live life to that standard, because otherwise, why bother?