Yesterday my co-worker and I started talking about our move abroad. We discussed the challenges of renting our homes out, getting rid of our furniture, storing items we wanted to keep, saying good-bye to friends, selling our cars, getting to the airport to leave the U.S. and move to another country for an indeterminate amount of time. We both said that had we not wanted it badly enough, we would’ve quit because the preparation is complicated and hard and scary. But we both wanted it very badly.
As we talked, I remembered the excitement I felt when I got on the plane. I was practically vibrating with happiness yet there was a sense of peace in my core that I can’t explain. The idea that I was moving to another country, that I was going to get to live in Asia, in Taiwan, was beyond exciting to me. It was a dream come true.
People would ask about my plans as I was preparing, and I had a nervous excitement about answering, as if I were bragging. But I had a layover in Tokyo on my way to Taipei, and, every time I said, “I have a layover in Tokyo,” I would feel a smile beam from my face. I couldn’t control it. It sounded so exotic and wonderful – “a layover in Tokyo.”
The excitement is different now, not as all-encompassing. Blair likened it to falling in love – and she’s right. We fell in love with travel, and we’re still in love. It’s no longer a new love, but a long-term relationship. So the rush and the giddy excitement is no longer there. Like any long-term relationship, it gradually became the new normal. I am still happy and still in love, but the feelings are the not the same as they were in the beginning.
I’ll never get back that feeling that comes from the newness of love. Even though I am considering moving to another country next year, I don’t have that same out-of-control, full body happiness. You can only fall in love once, and, even though I miss that feeling, I wouldn’t trade the past two years for anything. This is one relationship that isn’t going to end!