It goes without saying that 2020 has been the most unexpected wrecking ball of our time. We had plans, we had goals, we had achievements that we wanted to celebrate, and almost from one day to the next, the entire world was put on a serious time-out and that was it. I’m sure you and I can both come up with a list of reasons why this year has SUCKED in a matter of seconds. However, anytime something is destroyed, it creates space to build something new. What about all the hidden opportunities the pandemic has created?
In January I reached one year with my company, one year of living the perceived lavish lifestyle of waking up to new views, different countries, and the smell of jet fuel. One week I was working to Accra, Ghana, and BOOM, that was it.
Just like many others, it felt like a rug was snatched from under my feet, and all of a sudden I didn’t know where I would be living if I would still have a job or what my next move would be.
The first month and a half of quarantine I kicked ass. I literally did Yoga every morning, and if you know anything about me and my inability to not giggle during serious stretch moments, then you know this is a remarkable accomplishment. I changed my diet, I was active, I deleted the Instagram app off my phone and I read. I was killing it. That passed. Then I became overwhelmed and discouraged by feeling stagnant. I fell into a depressive swing, every morning I woke up feeling lonely, full of despair, and unable to motivate myself into positive thinking. Some days I couldn’t get out of bed. I spent too much time alone and didn’t reach out to my friends enough. I eventually called my mom and after that, I was able to gradually shift my perspective back into productivity.
My industry (like many others), was and still is severely affected by the pandemic. For months there was no clear answer on if my company would be issuing furloughs. We were eventually informed that there was a prediction of overstaffing in the coming year, and there was a need for employees to take voluntary leaves for a variety of time periods. I honestly had no idea what to do until one night I thought, "What if?"
I took leave from my company for a year. A WHOLE YEAR. I have no plans. I have no idea what I’m doing. I have no idea where I want to go. I am terrified, but that feeling is immeasurable to the excitement inside me. I’m 27 years old, and I somehow created an opportunity to take a break from my routine life and do whatever tf I want AND wherever I want. This might be the start of me re-writing my life’s purpose, to figuring out what I love (or hate), or this could be the moment I need to humble myself and go back to my pre-pandemic life. It feels oh so risky, but 110% right.
The excitement lies in the unknown, which is also what scares me the most. There is a chance that I will end up in a new city, with a completely new career and a new mindset. When that timer runs out, I may decide to continue my new life. Maybe I'll marry a king in a foreign land and my IG feed will be photos of us riding through deserts throwing up "W" West Coast signs on camels. Maybe I'll spend all my money on plane tickets and end up back at Starbucks in a city I can't afford. Who freaking knows.
I figured this was a pretty epic and fitting moment to launch my site that I’ve been working on. I also want to make it a point to document this journey, and therefore hope that you will follow along here. There is a chance it could be a total bust, and one year from now I may be right back at JFK in uniform beyond ready to ask, "Chicken or Beef?" Like I said before, who knows, but literally, there is only one way to find out!
If anyone has done anything similar, wants a visitor, or would just like to chat/share, please don’t be a stranger, and feel free to connect with me on my site or socials! I hope you’re ready for this, I know I am. It’s officially time to #FlyWithMK.