2 months later

February 4th, 2017

Since I’ve returned from my travels, it’s been pretty smooth sailing. I’ve been working consistently and it’s something familiar and new, (same place, new position,) which feels great. And I’m happy just to have a job. And have my days off and do what I want, and to be artistic and creative when I can. And see all my friends all the time. And enjoy being home, in my apartment, and in my room. It is so wonderful to have an apartment and a neighbourhood that I truly feel at home and comfortable in. And having been abroad just makes me appreciate these things all the more.

I’m still learning lessons from my trip./trips and trying to still be pensive about it. I do also think about South Korea a lot and what that meant to me. And how my time in South Korea had such a driving influence on this most recent trip. And that these two trips, now that there are two of them, mean more together than they would if I had only just done one. I have begun to make this a pattern for my life, for real. Leaving the country again is more of an assumed thing that will happen again for me, that people close to me understand, so I’ve gather. But also, now, as I meet people, it has become a thing I say about myself. I work here now, but sometimes I leave the country.

Because I do.

And that’s awesome. And I love that. And I love that this trip contributed to these accomplished feelings and future goals.

I love that I could do it alone. And did it alone. And would do it alone again.

I feel so good about where I am at in my life, and its not because I have everything figured out, it’s because I’m more comfortable with the idea of not having it all figured out. And letting everything work out. Going after what I want for my life and feeling good about it, and inspiring everyone else to do the same.

I may not have a super established career path, or know what country I’ll be in next year, or know if I’m saving for retirement. I don’t know if I’ll ever want to retire. My recently realized goal is to not find a job and work hard so that I can retire, but to find a job that I’ll want to do for the rest of my life without retiring. Sure, I’ll slow down someday, but ultimately I don’t know if I’ll ever want to really stop going. ((And let’s be honest,  the world may end before I can retire)). And right now, that’s not my goal. Maybe it will change down the line, but I know part of why I haven’t settled on a career path is because I don’t want to settle. I want to have so much peace with my decision that it makes more sense to do it than not to do it.

The best retirement to me right now would be living abroad and working in a bed and breakfast, giving yoga classes and meeting travellers. I can totally make that happen for myself someday.

I still feel really good about getting my Masters in Counseling. I don’t feel in a rush, but I feel like it is one of those decisions that makes more sense to go ahead with than not to. Now that the idea has permeated my brain, I’m finding reasons everywhere to back it up. Now that I’m bartending, that has become a form of Counseling. So many avenues of where I could go with it is the most important reason, from human resources to social work to school administration, it makes me so excited.  I need something broadly applicable because I have such an artistic collection of talents, one of the most important being my ability to work with a wide range of people.

So another lesson that I need to apply to my life is that of not limiting myself. Applying for jobs that sound interesting and inspiring, because why not? I don’t have to feel bad about working the restaurant industry, I’m making money and enjoying my life, but I also don’t have to limit myself to that, either.

I’ve traveled for an extended period of time three different occasions in my life, all very different and wonderful experiences. I have to feel good about that and I should and I do. And, yes, of course, I want to inspire people to travel, but ultimately, I want to inspire people to go after their dreams. Life is what you make it. And life is short. And goes really fast.

Another lesson I’ve learned/something I’ve realized, is how fast time flies. And everyone always says that and has always said that, but actually realizing its truth and how it applies to your life is so much more than just repeating a cliche. Before I left for Paris, 6 months was such a long time. Before I left for South Korea, and even while I was there, a year was such a long time. Before I left for my backpacking trip, 4 months was a long time. And I knew in the back of my mind, each time, that it wasn’t really that long, and definitely after I returned, it wasn’t that long. But still, that’s more than 2 years of my life that I’ve spent time out of this country. And I know there is a lot more time to add to that.

Life is wonderful. People are good. The world is a beautiful place. Realizing and appreciating these things are key to enjoying life everyday, and that’s the ultimate lesson I’ve learned from my trip, probably. Living in the moment and enjoying it for exactly what it is. I focused on that everyday of my trip, and it was easy, because everyday was something different and new, but why can’t I live like that in my home city? Enjoying the bike ride and the pretty buildings, eating at new restaurants and bars, going to movies and seeing concerts, hanging out with friends at hip spots. That’s a wonderful life too, and I appreciate those moments even more so now that I’ve been gone and experienced completely different moments. There is no better or worse, they just are, and they are wonderful how they are, as each day is. Even if I’m behind the bar all day, there’s good in that day, because I’m helping other people have a good day. And I had a lovely bike ride. And a cozy home to come back to.

There are definitely certain aspects of these lessons that I’ve half learned before, of course from my time in Korea, but still, I don’t think I was as present then as I feel like I’ve finally learned to be. In Korea, I had an end goal, and I was too impatient about completing it, and had too much limitations on the experience. If I had given it more space to breathe, I could have been more productive in Asia. But, my experience was excellent in what it was, and it’s fine how everything has happened since, that’s the way it is. But now I know.

Everyday I’m learning. Everyday I’m growing. I’m an ever changing complex being that’s on the ride of her life and is having a blast. I’m having fun now and I’m trying to figure out where my life will go without figuring it out too much. I will do more for society and for the world and I’ll try to be a positive energy in the world everyday, anyway.

I am an artist still trying to realize how to reach her potential and embrace the being that she is and will be.