Turns out, life is kind of difficult. Moving abroad is hard, homesickness is real and making new friends when you don’t speak a language isn’t a walk in the park.
Walks in the parks are lovely though. As is the abundance of food options, living in an energetic city and the adventure of navigating a place where I don’t fit in at all.
I’m working a nine to five job editing business reports, and spending my weekends getting lost by bicycle in the city, stumbling across coffee shops with wonderful smoothies.
But I haven’t been able to write a blog post. I remember to try, and then the reality of moving to a foreign country and taking my first job, opening my first bank account and renting my first apartment on my own comes crashing down, and I want to write about the oceans of anxiety between the moments of calm.
I begin to overthink things.
Am I doing this right? Should I go home? Am I allowed to spend a day in my bed, ignoring the amazing cultural experiences outside my window? (Literally, outside my window there is a pagoda and my apartment building is on top of a market, and last Saturday I watched Buffy the Vampire Slayer.)
I’ll write a sentence, stop, write another unrelated sentence, stop, save each of them in a separate document, stop, and then before I know it I’m still awake at 1 a.m. with 36 different documents, five post-it notes on my walls with other ideas and an early wake-up the next morning for work.
Newsflash: On top of life, writing is hard.
I’ve learned many of the dumb, simple lessons you read about in lists like, “Five Things College Grads Should Know Before Leaving School,” and it’s funny how much more vivid they become when you live the lesson instead of being told.
Appreciate the moment you live in? Check. No one really knows what they’re doing? Check. Pursue your passion? Check. Adult is just a word that means absolutely nothing? Check.
To quote John Patrick Shanley’s well-titled play, Doubt, I have doubts. And while it’s not about a court case, it’s about the direction in which I’m steering my life, which is kind of a bigger personal deal and kind of not a deal at all.
There are so many options and so much potential. And I decided on a nuclear one.
So damn the torpedoes, full speed ahead, as my great-uncle used to say, quoting naval propaganda. There’s nothing to lose by trying to get better at the tough stuff.