Just as the bracelets continue to grow on my wrist from medical alerts, the Full Moon Party and temples, so do my exotic expat experiences.
Week three and things are starting to get a bit more rough and real. But that’s what I expected and was ready for…right? Hurting from the work that hasn’t come through, the people who haven’t paid me and the thousands of American dollars I had planned to come with before ending up in the hospital with seizures, panic is setting in, and I can’t seem to stop myself from trying to push harder instead of thinking smarter. Especially after just getting a rejection from the San Francisco-based company I’ve been stalking and trying to become a part of since mid-January. Feeling a bit like I got stood up at the alter.
I “get it” all intellectually, but there’s still a shock to it that sends me spinning. Most of us know what that’s like. Even more so for those who are passionate enough for thoughts to be almost totally drowned out over feeling. The heart wants what the heart wants and doesn’t give a damn what the brain thinks about it.
Ten hour work days for the last week has meant that I’m not checking out enough of Phuket and I only have a week left here before moving on to Pai. It also means I’m not channeling the best energy for myself, those around me or my situation. Still, even though I’ve been having a rough go of it and am experiencing the first tiny pangs of homesickness for certain things, mostly work in San Francisco, I just feel more and more like I never want to go back. Not that I no longer have a life to go back to anyway.
The challenges suck a lot of the time, and there’s always challenges, so why not choose the ones that are involved with following dreams, yes? Can you keep reminding me? I need it.
Sure I’ve come close to bawling my eyes out, we’re in a hotter (and more humid) than hades heat wave and I’m worried about my friends, fellow travelers and little furry pals who are getting sick and injured, but everything overall is still moving forward wonderfully.
My dreams are absolutely playing out and then some. And there’s always those little moments of grace that are so desperately needed and probably barely noticed by those who provide them.
One of those moments being one night when I was standing by the pool dripping wet in nothing but a unicorn horn telling one of the visiting Scottish gals how I choose to be a bit of a nudist and feel like I do more good in the world by being bigger (though I condone being healthy and balanced first and regardless of size) because of the way I have seen my confidence in that help the lives of women who live in a world that tells them they don’t have as much worth if they’re voluptuous and should be ashamed of their bodies no matter what.
That beautiful and what seemed to be slightly conservative woman who was visiting with her fellow fashion-school graduates told me that I am an inspiration and the only true free-spirit that she’s ever met.
Whether she really meant it or was just trying to get my boobs out of her face, that was exactly what I needed. Well, that and the booty bath gun previously mentioned that not only keeps you feeling clean and can be a bit of fun (think shower head), but also proves to be a great shaving tool for those of us who go Brazilian (shoutout to my SoCalers and the ladies of Brazil).
The people of the world who have had real financial struggles involving survival would love to see those who say “money can’t buy you happiness” on a reality show or documentary like Living on One Dollar, or just dropped off in a third world country with nothing, because screw them.
OK, not really, but kind of. And I’m well-aware that my life is a fairytale compared to so many of the people in the world, but it still is obnoxious as hell.
Still, once getting past that initial slap in the face, we know the good of what is being said. And being around others who have had, are in and can relate to similar experiences are perfect for helping to get out of one’s own head and become aware of other options.
I can still write and look for more SF-based remote work while teaching English or working for gigs found through services such as Workaway. Sure! Why not! I’ll not only have the biggest stressors covered, a roof over my head and food on the table, but will be choosing volunteer projects that mean something to me and will start seeing more of Thailand through it. Both things that are incredibly important to me and on the list of this journey.
Of course it doesn’t really make sense as an American to work for money here, but all of the sudden an even better mix of working for good causes while continuing my remote work for actual money has presented itself. I wanted to volunteer anyway and was worried about landing work that would get in the way of my writing and adventuring. This is even more perfect than imagined!
And just like that, another door has opened.
Funny how that happens.