I've been sitting at Gatwick Airport for the last few hours trying to wrap my heart around the fact that this adventure I've been looking forward to for such a long time and that exceeded my wildest expectations is over. The following quote from Terry Pratchett's A Hat Full of Sky is helping a little.

Why do you go away? So that you can come back. So that you can see the place you came from with new eyes and extra colors. And the people there see you differently, too. Coming back to where you started is not the same as never leaving.