As mentioned in my post last week, I’ve got some pretty big changes coming up. And as much as I am looking forward to all the new things, moving on is not something I’m great at. Anyone who knows me knows that I am a deeply sentimental person, and the last stretch of anything — but especially a significant phase in life — always sneaks up on me.

Despite getting me every time, it’s a familiar feeling. It was the same feeling when I moved out of the house I’d spend the first 10 years of my life in, when I graduated high school and college, at the end of stretches of time spent with loved ones or traveling in new places. There’s a pre-separation missing that sets in, along with a nostalgia-like film over every sight, sound, and action.

For better or worse, emerging adulthood is a stage that’s full of changes. Moving out, going to college, getting a job, becoming financially independent, developing a serious relationship or starting a family. I have several friends who are living, at least for a while, in other countries. Several friends will be getting married in the near future. And as exciting as all of those changes can be, they’re also weird and often intimidating. They’re things we can never be fully prepared for (although being at least slightly prepared is advisable).

So even though change is a constant, I never quite get used to it. Two weeks from now my whole setting and day-to-day routine will be different. Though I will still care for and talk with all the same people, some will be closer and some will be further. And I’m trying to take in the last bit of this life stage with not just open eyes, but open hands, so that I don’t hold too tightly.

I’m realizing that I just spent my last Christmas living at home, and this is the last week of my current job and soon it will be the last time for at least a while that I live less than 20 minutes from my best friend. A little over a week from now will be the last time I get to walk my brother to school for a while. I’m on the last few pages of a journal I’ve spent the last 5 years filling up. I’m busy trying to squeeze in last visits with friends and family and last trips to favorite local places.

On the flipside, there are a lot of firsts coming up that I remain excited for. And in the midst of all the bittersweetness, there are things to be done like packing up all my junk. Life really doesn’t stop for anybody. But I am hoping that as bummed as I am to be leaving some things behind, the path ahead feels like the right adventure. And I hope that, if you’re reading this, your path feels like the right adventure for you.

Leaving behind the lasts for a moment, I would love to hear what your favorite first has been in your journey so far. If you’re willing to share, let me know in a comment below, on Twitter @ohgrowup, or Instagram @oh.grow.up. As always, thanks for reading, and happy adventuring!

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