small badgeOn Friday March 22nd I left Microsoft after 21 years, 4 months, 3 weeks and 6 days.

It’s a long time.

There had been a few occasions when rare and welcomed moments of idleness allowed me to fantasize about leaving the company, usually on the Connector when I was too tired to work or even listen to a podcast. Aimlessly looking at the cars stuck on 520, I would try to imagine how it would feel not to be a “softie” anymore. I assumed that it would be hard, after so many years the work you do becomes part of your identity, therefore the last days at work would be momentous and I would make sure to mark every single one of my last actions: my last Connector trip, my last meeting, my last cafeteria lunch, my last coffee, my last email, leaving my office for the last time.
And of course none of that happened, my reality is rarely sentimental, thank goodness, and it all went fast and in a rather prosaic manner (funny enough, my email address and my badge were the only two items that for a few minutes were hard to let go.)

As soon as I resigned I felt light and relieved. I danced and sang around the house and then I blasted James Brown’s “I feel good” and Nina Simone’s “Feeling Good” …and felt good!
The elation lasted around a week, followed by clarity and serenity. I have been waiting for the other shoe to drop, but so far there has been no other shoe.
I know that there will be times when I will miss the company for many reasons, but I feel OK with that.

I have some great memories and I have no regrets. I am not in denial about the bad moments – I can list them, alphabetize them and cross reference them for anybody who wants to listen for a few dozen hours – but they don’t seem to have an overwhelming weight now that I draw the balance.

So I find myself pleasantly surprised at my apparent maturity about this, who would have guessed! I am happy for not being resentful or smug; I am happy for not feeling sad and I am happy for not feeling too excited.

It seems that it was the right time to go.

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