“I wish my first spoken word was ‘Quote’ so I could make my last word ‘Unquote’.” — Stephen Wright
I have never really had the desire to attend my own funeral. But, in deciding to cease working, sell everything and hit the road, I have come to the point in the process which feels very much like I am observing my own demise and its aftermath.
And, I am blissful.
At work I have been methodically removing all personal belongings from my office, bequeathing items of remembrance as I go. To the manager who is perpetually warm, my electric fan. To the assistant who is always spilling things, a box of stain removers. To the law partner with similar cases, my expert files. To the staff member with eclectic taste, the Betty Page document bag adorned with skulls and roses.
With two business days to go, there is little left to indicate I was ever there. Coworkers walk by the bare space, frowning and shaking their heads; I mentally dance “the Snoopy Dance.”
For the last two months, friends, and friends of friends, have been shopping through my personal belongings at The Atomic Abode. Strangers open the closets and cabinets in my home, carrying armloads of clothes and linens that, up until a few months ago, were prized property. The estate sale in June will rid me of the remaining earthly possessions that have weighed me down and kept me stagnant. Every dollar is diesel fuel. I am jubilant.
In the last eight weeks I have been invited to happy hours and dinners, in homes and restaurants, by those who have heard the news that I am moving away. There have been beautiful written sentiments, many of which I am including on my blog, written by friends, neighbors, colleagues, and even a few opposing counsel. I am honored, and moved, and humbled.
On March 31, the requiem for my legal career: I will join friends at a favorite local watering hole to celebrate my last day as a practicing lawyer. Like a funeral, there will be some sadness, melancholy and nostalgia. But underneath it all, and propelling me forward, are the feelings of contentment, pride in a job well-done, and the sweet anticipation of what is to come.