This is the street I take leaving school each day. In three months, I'll take it one last time on my way out of Korea.
It’s done. I’m officially leaving Korea at the end of August. I told my co-teacher, and it was a much calmer event than I had anticipated considering my co-teacher’s general anxiety and proclivity for histrionics. It still wasn’t any less awkward than I imagined, though. I don’t leave for another three months, but my co-teacher essentially forced me and my other co-teacher to talk to her so that we could get to know each other — almost three months into the job. It was clear to me that the other co-teacher didn’t want to chit-chat all that much since she actually wanted to finish her work. Awkward.
Anyway, if the renewal discussion had come up last week, my life would be completely different. I was pretty set on staying for another year, but then something — I’m not quite sure what — happened over the weekend, and doubt quickly took over. In the end, the fact I wasn’t completely sold on Korea meant I shouldn’t commit to another full year. The worst thing that could happen is I go home, dink around, run out of money and come back. I could fly back here at the drop of a hat. It’s nuts when I really think about it.
It’s very liberating to have this decision finalized, but it’s a little nerve-wracking not knowing what’s coming next. It’s much easier to deal, though, because I have no deadlines or expectations to meet at this point. Except for a couple of bills, I’m free of responsibilities and can fly as far as my money will take me. I could dink around Asia a bit before I head home, where I will definitely bounce around the country. Right now, I’m taking any ideas I can get. I’m nervous, but I think it’s the good kind of nervous.
See you stateside.
Tomorrow’s the big day: I will be quitting my first full-time job. I have my resignation letter written; I just need to print, sign and seal it. I feel fairly confident that it’ll be an easy conversation. I’ve obviously already moved on professionally and mentally, so that will help assure my stance tomorrow.
Quitting comes with mixed emotions. The most apparent is the feeling of liberation, knowing that I’m in control of my life. There aren’t going to be any fireworks, but I will be loudly cheering on the inside as I set the envelope on my supervisor’s desk. The other feeling is insignificance that comes with the realization that we’re all replaceable. As soon as I quit, they’re going to miss me only until the next graphic designer is hired, and that search starts pretty much immediately. I’m over that, though.
After tomorrow, I will only have two weeks left of work, most of it will be spent wrapping up or preparing projects for the next person. I checked out of this job mentally and emotionally months ago, and only two weeks separates me from fully committing myself to the next step of my life: Korea.
Once I put in my two weeks’ notice, I’m virtually a lame duck. They can’t assign me any more long-term projects, so here are some thoughts on how I might spend the last 10 days at my desk:
- using the label maker to name each part of the computer
- reading blogs on how it feels to quit
- memorizing the Korean national anthem
- adding “was here” to my nameplate — using aforementioned label maker
- hand-slicing unnecessary paper (via X-acto, of course) into confetti I can throw on the way out
- playing “Hallelujah” on repeat for the last hour of the last day
Any other ideas? I’m starting to feel a bit of jittery excitement.