There are days when I wonder how I got here. I wonder how I came to the decision to quit my good job, get rid of nearly all my belongings and set out for an utterly foreign place far, far from comfort. I wonder why I thought putting myself in an uncomfortable or really challenging situation on a regular basis was a good idea. These thoughts usually come when I’m having a rough day and feel like I don’t have the strength to complete my contract here. Yes, I will admit I have those thoughts where all I want is to come home to a place of ease where family, close friends and IPAs are within reach.

I had the same thoughts throughout the first year I lived in Seattle. When I was 22, right after graduating from college, I decided to move from Colorado to Washington and really didn’t put much thought into it. I just did it. I remember my first night in that city so clearly. It was a hot August evening. I was exhausted from driving halfway across the country and moving into my apartment in a city I really knew nothing about. All I wanted was a shower, but I couldn’t find my shower curtain anywhere and it made me so angry. I ended up on the floor in the middle of a bunch of boxes, sobbing, wondering what I’d just done. Why did I just leave the city I’d lived in all my life for a place where I had no job and didn’t know a single person? Why would I put myself in that position? I remember panicking, thinking I’d just made the worst decision ever.  But I didn’t. Not only did I grow to absolutely love that city, I grew as a person in so many ways. The people and experiences that came from my decision to take that uncertain path will be cherished forever. I’m sure I will look back on my year in Korea and feel the same sense of gratification.

I know that I will not stay in Korea beyond the end of my contract which means I need to begin thinking about my next move. Where will it be?  What will I do? I really don’t know, and not knowing has evoked a lot of anxious feelings. The unknown is a scary place, but it always has a way of unfolding into something beautiful. Perhaps patience is key. Or just trusting that the path I take is meant to be and I will choose it for a reason, even if that reason isn’t known until I’m well on my way.

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