What is a departure?
Is it the act of leaving a place? A person? A situation? Is it the mere parting of ways with a current reality? Or is it the brave choice to vacate stagnant locales, in pursuit of compelling new dwellings?
Is it the long-standing desire to swap out the familiar, in exchange for the possibility of buoyant new beginnings? Or is it simply an impulsive decision made blindly by the restless?
Is it bravery or cowardice? Escapism or sweet surrender? Is it all of these things, and somehow, none?
It is difficult to define, for it is never embarked upon for the same reason. At times, a choice-less matter, a painful necessity. At others, an exciting, carefully-calculated prospect.
Yet, despite its dualistic nature, it is generally poorly perceived. It is synonymous with endings, which have always been burdened with a bad reputation.
This explains why melancholy is undoubtedly, the overwhelmingly discernible sentiment permeating airport terminals. It must be why hearts sink upon contemplation of parting’s imminence, and why its approach incites tears to be shed like Spring-time rain.
It seems though, that departure’s truth may have been overlooked. Does to depart not also mean to arrive? And if so, then is a departure not a beautiful thing? Is it not, then, the most important thing that one can ever hope to do?
Perhaps, the issue has been misinterpreted all this time. Perhaps it is not departure but arrival which instills fear. Not endings, but beginnings. Not suffering, but joy.
Maybe it is easier to succumb to conformity’s grip, than to risk the happiness which may transpire upon the turning of a new leaf. Maybe it is a feeling of unworthiness of the life that could be, if one were only audacious enough to take the leap.
Departure may be difficult to define, but it is never in vain, for to depart, inevitably means to arrive. And one should arrive, each and every single day.
The Seychelles, July 2017.