A New Experience
I think because I was always quite weary and scared of new experiences growing up that I now try to push myself to do the opposite, no matter how uncomfortable or naturally foreign. Internally kicking and screaming, I have dragged myself forward over the last few years, trying to do new things that would challenge me, interest me, and ultimately, change me. Maybe call it character development. Or just a deep-rooted distaste for remaining the same. Whatever it is, it has caused me to do and accomplish many things which at one point in my life I would have never imagined. It is this innate nagging need for development that has led to me start this blog, something I have considered for a long time. Finally overcoming the anxiety, and very real probability, that no one would in fact care much about my journey or the things I’ve done, I have come to the conclusion that this blog can be for me first and for others second. If no one reads, that is fine, but if you do, I hope you enjoy what I have to offer.
I will start at the present and maybe refer to the past in other blogs. I am currently in Thailand. How I got here, and sometimes why, still alludes me. I don’t mean by what means, obviously I know how I travelled here. An 18-hour flight is hard to forget, especially for those of us who have the displeasure of both not being great flyers and suffering with chronic back pain. Seriously a double whammy. What I mean is I sometimes look around and can’t fully understand how I made it this far considering everything I know about myself. I think I need to reflect more on that so for now I’ll just explain what my own current understanding is. For a long time, I have had a fear of missing out, not for anything however, more that by doing anything boring of mundane I would be missing out on what life has to offer. For me the idea of doing a mind-numbingly boring job and sitting behind a desk Monday to Friday has always filled me with indescribable dread; like it truly went against everything in my being. That’s probably why I’ve done everything in my power to delay it, from doing two degrees, to now teaching abroad.
At some point during my masters, I made the emphatic decision that before I joined all my peers in getting a ‘real job’, whatever that is, I had to at least experience something completely new and unfamiliar. Travelling would, I thought, give me the opportunity to do just that. In all honesty when I first had the idea, I probably never actually believed I’d ever do it. It would have been more one of those things that sounded cool rather than something one does — similar to when I decided I would do a masters (a story for another time). But over time, the idea grew exponentially in my head to the point that when people asked me of my plans after my postgrad I automatically and unconsciously responded with, “oh I’ll be going travelling”. This was usually met with questions of where, to which I would respond “probably somewhere in Asia”. Why Asia, I have no idea. Maybe because it seemed so foreign to me it could have really been another world, or maybe because it just seemed cool to say, either way, soon the whole continent of ‘Asia’ now become part of the story.
In 2020 I finished my masters, and it was now time to make good on my promise, both to others and to myself. I would now go traveling and see part of the world, push myself out of my comfort and become a new confident person because of it. There was only one problem. And its name was covid. I will go into detail about covid, its effects on my plans, and what I did during the time I was given to further prepare myself for my trip abroad, in another blog. For now, I will just say that I was especially lucky and privileged that whilst the pandemic did delay my trip, it also gave me greater time for reflection and to prepare for it, something which on reflection I truly appreciate. I say this with awareness of those who were not lucky like me and went through personal turmoil as the world suffered. However, determined to still call my own bluff, I committed to begin my adventure, and after a long process of organising my trip, in December of 2021 I left for Thailand to become an English teacher in Bangkok.
So, from a simple idea with no true thought put into it I had managed to get myself across the world to a continent I had never even stepped foot in. I can’t help but realise all my major accomplishments have been things that at one point I merely just said out loud and did not truly believe myself. Maybe there’s something deeper there that needs investigating. Either way I’m here now and have been lucky to experience so many new things and continue to do so every day. And it is these things, along with whatever else comes to my mind, I will continue to share over the next coming months — I hope you’re excited as I am…