April, like every month seems to do these days, has come round very quickly. It’s a lovely time of year, this. And although I have always understood Eliot’s observation from The Waste Land that spring can be violent and cruel, disturbing the comforting blanket of snow and dead leaves silently built up over the winter months, I tend to err more on the side of rejoicing when I notice the first crocuses and daffodils. In any case, climate change continues to knock the seasons out of kilter and if Eliot were to write The Waste Land today, perhaps it would start “February is the cruellest month”. And that doesn’t scan half as well.
Miraculously, it has been nearly a year since I left my job: a year ago, I was about to enter the last week of my 10-year stint there. I stumbled across my good luck cards in the cupboard this weekend and reading some of the messages again reminded me how I felt this time last year: a mix of trepidation and excitement I think. It had been such a long time since I had decided to leave work that I was mentally completely ready to go, but at the same time the uncertainty that lay ahead did fill me with a certain amount of dread.
I chose my leaving date deliberately to fall in the spring, as there is something about this season that’s just inspiring and hopeful and full of promise. If you’re going to make big life changes, spring is as good a time as any. It’s just insane that it’s a whole year ago already. Although at the same time it feels like several lifetimes ago. Time is such a funny thing.
I will say this again next week, when I intend to write a proper ‘one year on’ post (I’ve even thought about drawing an infographic to go with it, although we’ll see how that goes haha), but I am so glad I closed that 10-year chapter last year. I’m feeling a renewed sense of trepidation this spring because I know it’s time very very soon to grit my teeth again and hit the jobs market, and I am slightly nervous about not knowing what awaits me beyond the end of my current contract in June. But each time I feel slightly uncertain about the future, I have to just close my eyes and imagine how I would feel if I hadn’t made that leap of faith last year. My bank account would be in a slightly more salubrious state, sure. But other than that, I dread to think what life would be like. The trick is now to harness the optimism and opportunity of spring and force those lilacs out of the dead land.