I felt something very familiar today. I couldn't put my finger on it, but something was definitely affecting my mood. I felt a little lost, disoriented, like I was forgetting something but wasn't sure what. At other times I felt hyperactive, almost giddy, but it never quite reached my heart. It was all a show that even I didn't realize I was putting on.
It didn't hit me until my shift at Quizno's. I even remember the moment -- I was punching someone's order into the credit card machine. It was an action I have repeated and re-repeated for months. And it felt different. Even though I was doing something I have done so many times before, it felt like something was missing -- once I finished punching in those numbers, and went back to life, it wouldn't be the same.
And then it hit me. I recognized the feeling, the overwhelming understanding that despite the familiarity in my routine, something that had been my constant was gone.
It's the feeling I have when I get dumped.
I have been in a wonderful, painful, perfect relationship for over three years now. I put everything into this relationship -- my time, my money, my tears, my heart -- and now it's done. We parted without hard feelings, our time had obviously passed. But there is such an empty ache that sets in long before reality ever does, when you know the thing that has been a part of you for so long is gone.
Today my last paper came out. I have been editor-in-chief of the University Journal for a year now, and a member of the staff since I got to college. I will still be working hard at the paper next semester, but it will be different. It's not my paper anymore. I put my whole self into it, but now it's time to move on. The Journal will never love me back, as Erin puts it. It's not meant to be forever, but WOW, wasn't it great while it lasted?
I want to say THANK YOU to all of the great people I have met and worked with in my first years as a Journalist. This is my life, and I love it. And while the split will be tough, it is survivable. And once the empty ache fades, a bittersweet memory will take it's place -- painful, but perfect. That's just the way I am.