2016, the Beginning: Lost and Okay With It.

I have a confession to make:

I’m lost…

What a way to start of the new year, right?

But this is a good thing. I promise!

I’m not physically lost. I know exactly were I am. I could point it out exactly on a map. As I write this (being the dutiful blogger that I am and getting this done ahead of time), I’m currently physically sitting in my apartment in Central Thailand. By the time this post goes live, I’ll be sitting on a beach somewhere down south, perhaps a little hungover from a too exciting New Years Eve.

So no, I’m not physically lost. Rather, I feel mentally lost…

A ‘who am I and what do I aim to do with my life and I really have no fucking clue how to navigate this world that I’m in’ lost.

I’m feeling rather calm about the whole ordeal. No need to freak out here. Just accepting these feelings as they come, ya know?

— — — —

The past few months have been a whirlwind for me. I’ve had very little time to process everything that has happened. Now, finally, I feel like I’m settling into my town. I feel comfortable here. I know where things are; though the language barrier is continuing to be difficult, I’m picking up on more Thai and trying my best to utilize that in conversation. After spending the last couple months here drawing inward and trying to make sense of my place here, I’m finally eager to go out and meet and develop relationships with Thai people.

I’m so happy to be here and can’t imagine living anywhere else right now. Though there are certain aspects of home that I miss, I don’t crave them. I don’t desire to have them in my life.

Thailand is where I need to be right now. This I know with confidence.

Thailand is the place where I’m choosing to figure myself out. While I learned so much about myself in college, I’m realizing here and now that I have so much farther to go. Sooo much farther.

And you know what? That’s okay.

I’m twenty-two.

I’m so young.

I mean, okay, if this were fourteenth century Europe, I’d be practically middle aged by now but, I digress, this is not fourteenth century Europe. This is 2016 and life expectdencies are much higher these days.

I’m so young.

In many ways, I view myself as a very mature young adult. In the last few years, I’ve pushed myself in a lot of ways and I’ve discovered a lot of things about myself and about people in general and I think I have a lot of good things figured out. Things that will only continue to help me as life goes on.

But…I’ve been discovering lately that, for all that I have figured out, there’s a hell of a lot more that I have to learn. There are so many more ways that I need to and want to push myself.

I came to Thailand because I wanted to teach, yes, and because I wanted to live abroad. But I also came to Thailand to push myself. And, in many ways, I have been pushing myself. But there is so much more out there that I don’t know, that my anxiety has been keeping me from, that I know I can strive for if I try.

Maybe not all right now–because this life thing is damn hard and I find that, while sometimes it’s useful to dive in head first, other times it’s better to take things one step at time. I dove in head first with coming to Thailand–and now, now I need to take some time to figure things out slowly. To really take things one step at a time.

I really do love it here. I love the people. I love the culture. I love all there is to see and do. But…I still feel lost.

But really now–is feeling lost the worst thing in the world? I have a roof over my head, a job that makes me happy, and amazing friends and family both here in Thailand and back home.

We put so much pressure on ourselves to have a plan, to make things happen, to have life figured out…

…and I’ve discovered in the past year how much I hate that.

Life isn’t about who wins the race first. It’s about living and breathing and being here in this world.

I can’t tell you where I’ll be in a year. Right now, I think I’ll still be in Thailand and I’m planning to still be in Thailand–but who knows where life will take me next. Who knows what opportunities will  present themselves.

I feel lost and I’m okay with that…because I’m twenty-two years old and frankly, anybody who says I have to have my life figured out by now is full of crap.

I think, to an extent, being lost is a good thing. It means there’s more of life to figure out, more journeys and adventures to take. I still have a lot to figure out about this life and about myself and I can’t think of a better place in the world to be than Thailand to continue on this journey.

So, I’m a bit lost in this life. I don’t know where I’m going after Thailand…but why should I? At this point, I love where I live, I love my job, and I have no plans of leaving in the immediate future.

I may not find everything that I’m looking for in Thailand (hell, what am I even looking for?) but I do know that I will live fully here. I will strive to be my best self. And good things will come from that. Because I’m determined, dammit.

Not all who wander are lost…but some are. And maybe, just maybe, not all who are lost are looking to be found. Maybe…maybe, they are just looking to live. I want to push myself here in Thailand. I want to figure out how to navigate this world better and to feel more comfortable and confident in it. And I know I will–because, as I said above, I’m determined, dammit!

Will it happen tomorrow? hell no. Will I have everything figured out by the time I leave Thailand? Unlikely. But this is a process that will yield so many rewards for me personally.

So, as the New Year begins–as we welcome 2016 to the table–I can say with certainty that this year is going to be a lot. 2015 was easily the best year of my life so far…and so much more is coming in 2016. Room for new opportunities to learn and grow, to push myself. I can’t say with certainty if 2016 will be just as amazing as 2015–but I have a feeling that, with the right outlook and attitude, it will be that and so much more.

It’s the New Year. I’m lost. And I’m okay with that. With that…here’s to new adventure and new life and new growth in 2016.

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Photo credit: Kaija Reinelt
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31 thoughts on “2016, the Beginning: Lost and Okay With It.

  1. I often forget how young you are because you have so much more figured out than I did at that age. Here is an alternative definition of life: Life is that process of trying to figure out who you are and what you want to do with yourself in the long term. If you have it figured out, you’re dead 😉 I’m quite a bit older than you and am still lost, and love every second of trying to find that path. That, that! is life. And you do seem to be living yours to the fullest. Happy New Year! (I think the beach I was on this morning was much colder than the one you will find yourself on 😉 )

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    1. Happy New Year Trent! Thank you so much for this amazing advice! I love, love, love it! I’m trying my best to love live it to the fullest and I feel I’m getting better at that everyday, but it’s also terribly hard to remember sometimes. Living a comfortable, unadventurous life is so much easier…but way less rewarding. Cheers to a wonderful 2016!

      Liked by 2 people

  2. Lovely post, Britta. Like you, I can definitely relate: I’m twenty-two as well, and even though I have a job in a country that I love, I also feel a sense of…uncertainty when it comes to life. The future, specifically: I don’t know what I’ll be doing after my job contract ends in a few months, and so I feel lost, too. Especially hard for me, since I’m so used to have things planned out in advance. But then again, taking advantage of this moment, being abroad and experiencing new things every day, is wonderful. I believe that taking the time to do this will actually help discover what I might possibly be doing in the following months afterwards. One shall see; perhaps you have the same perspective as well?

    Any case, I wish you a pleasant (and calm) day in Thailand. And happy 2016! 😀

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    1. I am open to anything and definitely believe that my current experiences in Thailand will potentially lead me to my next step. I’m in no rush to get to that next step though. I simply adore Thailand, despite the daily frustrations of living here (Thailand is the most lax country ever, which isn’t conducive for scheduling and planning). I have no intentions of leaving anytime soon…though, as I said in the post above, who knows where life will take me!

      New Years day was quite lovely in Thailand. I traveled south to the land of beaches for the holiday and will get a post written up about it one of these days. Happy New Year to you, too.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Happy New Year 🙂 I’ve been working at camp this week and it’s a reminder that my campers think I’m SO old, SO adult, can’t even imagine being so grown up. To me, it doesn’t feel that way. I feel so young, and often lost or confused. It’s just a matter of perspective–my friends are constantly in awe of how I seem to have my life together externally even though I’m internally disoriented. I think you’ve got the same thing going on. I look at what you’re doing and what you’ve achieved and I think “wow, she’s so brave and really reaping the rewards of taking an incredible risk and totally has it all figured out” and then I’m humbled when you share this insecurity and lost feeling. Thank you for writing this.

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    1. You’re so right, Sabina. It is ALL about perspective. You know, I look at you and see such a confident and driven and adventurous nineteen year old and I really admire that because when I was nineteen, I was so lost I didn’t even know I was lost. I had no idea who I was. Growing up is hard, though. Hell, just plain living is hard sometimes and we all have our struggles on this inside. Yes, I have a to be proud of in uprooting myself and moving to Thailand, but that certainly doesn’t mean it’s been easy OR that I have it all figured out.
      So glad you enjoyed this post!
      Also, Happy New Year to you, too!

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Happy New Year Britta! It’s okay to be lost, that giddy uncertainty you feel that you KNOW you are lost. Most everyone has been lost in one way or another. Important thing is you acknowledge it. May you have more travels and adventures to come this year!

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Happy New Year Britta. Enjoy this year, I hope you continue to grow and discover yourself and this world. It’s such an exciting time and I look forward to reading about your discoveries in the next year. 🙂 x

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  6. Happy (belated) New Year Britta! 🙂 I absolutely echo the sentiments in this piece! I have no idea where I’m headed after grad school ends next September, but I’ve sort of realised that I like that uncertainty. It only means I have a world of possibilities to chose from!

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    1. Thanks Adi! Hope you had a wonderful New Years, yourself.

      I’ve realized that I like uncertainty, too. It’s scary and can be really harder to live with such uncertainty, but it’s also so much more freeing to not know what’s coming next.

      Liked by 1 person

  7. I read your post and I feel so identified with it.
    I really enjoy your post and your blog, I just came back to my country after 2 months and a half traveling south east asia, so I perfectly understand your feeling.

    Happy New Year 2016!

    Like

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