Above is a quote from Seth Godin. Now, I don't know much about this man except that he is an entrepreneur, author, and public speaker (thanks, Wikipedia). However his words encourage me to do one of the things I fear most; leave the comfort and routine of the world I am used to, and dive into a new culture, new life style, and a new way of living.
Many people think I'm crazy, others are very encouraging, others state that they are jealous and wish they had this opportunity, and still others are very worried for me. To be perfectly honest, I currently go through all of these emotions about 12 times a day, particularly as the time approaches for me to hop on a plane and never return.
I often think that I am crazy for doing this, but at the same time, I know I need and am ready for a new adventure in my life.
I am so thankful to be encouraged by the people around me, including the friends I already have over in Korea. Yes I am lucky to have convinced 3 of my friends to go on this grand adventure with me. That being said, I also know a total of 8 people from WWU in the Seoul area of Korea as we speak. Will I see all of those people? I don't know, but it is those 3, in particular, that have kept me going through this process, and I have had the opportunity to encourage those friends to get to where they are as well. I couldn't be more excited to embark on this journey with the people who are currently waiting for me overseas with open arms.
Some people say they are jealous of my opportunity, but I have spent some time recently feeling the same way as many of my colleagues from my education cohort are beginning their first teaching jobs in Kindergarten through 8th grade, as well as several friends that are even starting out their school year as High School teachers. As I sit here and wait for it to be my turn to fly 11 and a half hours to Korea, I can't help but hope that I have opportunities just like them when I get back from my travels and teaching experience abroad. However it does help me to think that in about a month from now, I will meet a class full of eager Kinders ready to spend some time with me learning English!
Sure I worry about some of the things that are going to happen to my when I get there, or NOT happen to me when I get there. Am I worried about what I'm going to eat everyday? Yes. Am I worried about how to get around when I don't speak the language? Yes. Am I worried that what I pictured this whole situation being like in my head won't turn out as I had planned? Yes. But it is all of these things that make this traveling experience a new adventure, and as Seth would say "if it scares you, it might be a good thing to try." We need to push ourselves into uncomfortable and vulnerable situations so that we can grow as people. This may be one of the scariest things I've ever had to do, but I'll be damned if I don't learn a thing or two from it! I believe that experiencing a new culture in this way will probably change my outlook on many things, but it is these challenges and changes that I seek, even if it is at times painful to get there.