It is real now. My last day at work was last Thursday. From the initial dialogue about redundancy on 29th April, the discussion phase, then three months formal notice, it is final. It is no longer a dream. It is my reality.

It has been an emotional week. I have known some colleagues for the fifteen years that I have worked at this company, some even longer as we knew each other in a previous employment. It is a sociable office environment. We have shared our lives outside of work. Colleagues became friends.

Colleagues have grown up, have married, have had children. Some have divorced, some have retired, had grandchildren. Some have gone forever, one particular team mate died of cancer in his early thirties.

Colleagues have come and gone to other organisations, to other professions, to other life choices. Some colleagues I have only known for a few years, but we have worked well together, worked towards shared objectives, experienced the ups and downs of the company and the industry.

It has been nostalgic, preparing to leave, clearing out old files, sharing coffees and lunches in these final weeks, sharing memories, remembering old colleagues. Even though it was my choice to leave, it has been hard to walk away.

It has been a fine balance of looking back and looking forward, an interesting experience.