Late February, 2016

Currently feeling: Vulnerable and confused.

Vulnerable because I’ve been doing things and having conversations with people and just generally putting myself in situations that are outside my comfort zone pretty consistently these last few weeks.

Confused because I’ve been constantly questioning myself lately–who am I and what am I doing in this life and what do I want? I feel as if I’ve having an identity crisis of personality and ideology and values. Am I really an introvert or do I just have social anxiety? But can I call myself an extrovert–that goes against everything I know about myself. Maybe I’m somewhere in the middle because I do need my alone time but also have discovered over the past few months how much I thrive with people. What do I actually want and how will I accomplish that?

Thoughts and feelings and ideas are racing through my brain at lighting speed. I don’t know how to silence them. I’m struggling with concentrating. With just sitting still.

I’m eager to go home, yet want to make the most of my last month and a half abroad. Do I really want to spend all of March and half of April traveling? Honestly? No. I’m so exhausted from everything that my time abroad has taught me and I just want to go home. But plane tickets are bought and budget airlines aren’t about convenience and getting your money back in ticket canceling and I don’t want to lose that money. I want to go to these places and I’m going to go to them, even though I don’t really want to right now…because I know I’ll regret it if I don’t.

I’m in a weird place right now. A place that is really hard in some respects, but I also know it is serving me so very well.

I don’t shy away from vulnerability and I guess it’s natural to feel confusion now and then, especially at 22.

So that’s me.

How have you been lately?

 

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14 thoughts on “Late February, 2016

  1. We are all confused, and at 22, yeah, that goes with the territory.

    Being an introvert means you live life inside your skull, not out in the open. You can be a “people person” and be introverted. Typically introverts like smaller, intimate company better than large groups. And nobody lives all of the cliches. I’m ultra-introverted, yet as a kid I always did thrill stuff, like jumping off of bridges and climbing cliffs. As an adult I have enjoyed throwing myself off of impossibly steep cliffs with skis on my feet (triple diamond and back country). If you read the books that means I’m an ultra-alpha extrovert. Thinking of books, you read the book “Quiet” didn’t you? If not, read it. it isn’t perfect, but a great read. For 95% of the book I thought she was talking about me.

    I can see how it will be difficult traveling. I did a little traveling in my mid-20s, but nothing like this or for the amount of time you are talking about. At least you’ll be meeting up with some friends and family on your travels.

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    1. Oh yes, I’ve read Quiet and I know what the definition of introvert and extrovert is–introverts gain their energy from alone time and extroverts gain their energy from being with others. I am very aware of this, and I’m questioning it because I’ve realized while in Thailand how much I can thrive when I’m with people. I still very much need my alone time and would be more apt to call myself an ambivert than an extrovert–but I just don’t know how much I identify as a hardcore introvert anymore. I’m also highly sensitive, so I get tired very easily–and that might have something to do with this confusion–because highly sensitive people don’t always identify as introverts but can also have rich inner worlds.

      I’m feeling much better now, Trent. I actually took Friday off from school because I had no voice and was feeling quite ill. I spent the whole day sleeping and had an overall very chill and very enjoyable weekend. This next month is going to be crazy busy and will undoubtedly take a lot out of me, but I can feel my body preparing by withdrawing and just wanting to take it slow. I’m looking forward to traveling, despite how tiring it will be. It will also be much less stressful for me since I will be going most of the time with friends–and then I will be traveling with my parents when they come to visit me in Thailand.

      Hope all is well with you!

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      1. Nobody is a walking definition, but then you know that. i took Thursday and Friday off of work too and relaxed on Cape Cod. Well, kayaking in a 60 mph wind can be relaxing at times 😉 It is easier to face the world after a chill weekend. Glad you were able to have some quiet time to recharge. I’m sure despite the current roller coaster this will be a time of your life you always treasure,a s will your travels.

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  2. I’ve been in the same boat for the last year. I travelled three months straight at the start of 2015 by myself and I was ready to come home only weeks into it. Then I met some new people who I decided to travel with for a while and that turned into around six weeks. The last three weeks of my trip were spent in some places I’ve always wanted to go and I still moved my ticket home forward by a week with the excuse that I would actually save money that. In reality I just wanted to go home and build a life that travelling made me realise I was kinda missing.

    Having said all of that, it’s almost a year later and when I look back on my time travelling, not once do I regret sticking the three months out and all I can do is smile at all the fun I had. The bad parts don’t have to be part of the story I tell people or myself unless I want them to be.

    I’m still asking myself those same question you are everyday but believe me when I say you can be anywhere in the world at 22 and you will still be redefining yourself and tormenting yourself with hard questions that you have no way of answering until after the fact.

    For now, keep asking yourself if you feel you need to but make sure to give yourself a break every now and then and just accept that who you are right now is who you are and tomorrow’s identity can wait it’s turn. As for being tired abroad, go have a you day, whatever that entails. Adrenaline rush, cafe crawl, hiding away in a book shop or museum for the entire day. The next day if necessary, repeat and then come back to all the new experiences with a bit more energy.

    I hope this helps and you have an absolutely brilliant time doing whatever the hell it is you want to do.

    Clare

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    1. Wow, thank you so much for sharing, Clare. I completely relate to this 100%. I thought I wanted to live this life as an expat and was so determined to–until I realized how fundamentally unhappy I was here and how much I wanted to go back home and build a life there. This experience has served me so well and I have learned SOOO much from it, but doing it any longer than I have been wouldn’t be best for me.

      I’m in a much better place now than I was when I wrote this post last Thursday. I had a very chill and relaxing weekend and took some much needed time for myself. I know traveling will be exhausting, but I will be spending most of the time traveling with friends and family, which I’m very much looking forward to. I will make sure to go at my own pace, since I do get exhausted really easily. So excited to see some new places, but also can’t wait to get back to the comforts of home.

      I will never regret my five months living in Thailand and I know that I will never regret going on my travels that begin soon, either.

      Thank you for you support. 🙂

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      1. Not a problem, I’m glad I could help and I hope the rest of your time travelling is absolutely amazing and all yours. 😀

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  3. Been there and felt all of those emotions. I completely understand not feeling like I wanted to go on a trip. But in the long run I was glad I went because it was the best trip I had ever been on. This week for me has been a little crazy but I’m choosing to think positively and not dwell in all the craziness.

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    1. Definitely in a better place now than when I wrote this, Katy. Had a very relaxing weekend and took a lot of time for myself and it was just what I needed. I know the next month an a half of traveling will be exhausting, but I also know it will be amazing and I’m very excited to experience it all. 🙂

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  4. Traveling and living out of your comfort zone can be so exhausting and I totally understand your feeling of being lost . Just be reassured that it is totally normal, at any age. Especially for introverts like you 😉 So sweetie, take time for yourself and only yourself. Unplug, go for a long massage and write, write and write if you feel like it. THings always work better if we unplug them from times to times. Us included 😉
    Big big hug from our little island X

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    1. Definitely feeling better now, Estelea. Took this weekend for myself and it was absolutely just what I needed.

      I know the next month and a half will be exhausting, but it will also be so enriching and so wonderful and I’m so excited to live it.

      Thank you, as always, for you support.

      Last week of school is coming up starting tomorrow and I can hardly believe it–where has the time gone?

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      1. If you are asking yourself where the time’s gone, it means you had a blast 🙂 Really happy to read that you’re feeling better, have a beautiful time and enjoy all the travels and the magical things you ll find along the road 😉

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  5. I bet it felt good getting that off your chest!
    I can’t even begin to imagine doing what you’re doing, you’ve got some serious guts. I was only away from home for six weeks, and I actually came home for a day in between and was able to give my mum a big hug. And I was traveling with Kris thankfully, but you always miss home. And then where you are abroad pulls you in every direction you weren’t expecting.
    What a beautiful experience you’ve had so far though, even if it was incredibly trying in it’s early days, and it seems by the comments that the confusion is easing. Good luck in the next leg of your adventure!! Looking forward to reading all about it 🙂

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    1. My time abroad living and teaching in Thailand has definitely been the best thing I’ve ever done for myself. It’s been really hard sometimes and my mental and physical health have definitely suffered (My most recent battle: pneumonia) but for all the struggles, I’ve learned so much and grown so much and experienced and seen so much and for that, I’m so grateful.
      Hope you had a wonderful trip–you were SUPER far from home in Chile, but it sounds like you got to see some beautiful places!

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