I’ve lost the closeness of many of my most intimate relationships, if not breaking them all together. As I grow and become different, so do those connections. Will San Diego still be my home in a couple of years? Will these people still be my family? Will they even be friends? This has to be the hardest part of the transition into my new global lifestyle. I have no more belongings or stability, but I’m getting used to that. My ego took a beating but I saw it as a sign that I needed to be humbled. It’s the people and place that I love where I have to fight the urge stop myself from holding back.
Now beyond the first stages of this lifestyle change, I’ve realized that where I am with these things and their importance in my life will also change. Right now, I’m in a place that’s extremely lonely and at one of the stages of in between, but this too shall pass.
Tests come in all different ways and from all kinds of directions. For a time, I thought I was getting lost in how to get to the reality of these dreams. Now I realize that it has just been the trial and error of breaking down my old life and figuring out the new. First set on the idea of landing remote marketing work based in San Francisco on top of my writing, I realized once flying back to the states to follow up that this lifestyle would command commitments that would keep me behind a computer 50+ hours a week. What’s the point of living around the world to experience new people and cultures if I’m not doing exactly that?
I’ve also faced some harsh growing pains during my time trying to rack up money in the states. If I work for more than 40 hours a week, it’s not likely that I’ll get any writing done. One of the most important foundation aspects of my life. Also that driving for Lyft in certain neighborhoods of San Diego land my income in the red instead of making the $1,000 after the cost of the rental car and gas that I was making in the Bay Area. An incredibly debilitating blow.
Getting better and more fluid every time, I’ve found new temp work delivering for Amazon that I can pick up and drop as my crazy life and travel allows. Likely with the constant change and challenge that has become the mantra of my life, I’ll figure it out one step at a time.
In regard to what’s happening overseas, I still plan on heading back to Thailand and possibly surrounding countries in January but even the plan is proving to need to be fluid. With the income challenges listed above, I may not be there as long as originally planned. Also because I may need to be back in the states to interview for the ESL teaching position I am applying to in Japan. If I land that job, I’ll likely try to hit up other parts of the world before heading back to Southeast Asia. If not, back to the drawing board.
Unsurprising that there is no substitute for experience, my one month abroad has already shown me that it’s much easier being there than at home. The community of people exploring the same lifestyle understand what I am going through and are much more supportive. Their reaction to the hardships involved are “yeah, we all went through that” along with suggestions and helpful hookups. A notable contrast to the pals in America who make statements about these things being signs that I’m on the wrong path. We all face hardships and these ones are just different from those who have lived a conservative Californian lifestyle without really stepping out to see that there are many different ways to live. Though well intentioned, it has been damaging both to me and our relationships to be teased, called unrealistic, irresponsible and the other forms of judgment. It has also helped me to appreciate those kindred spirits out there who are experiencing the same and amped up my excited about the day when it’s my turn to help.
There’s a lot of examples in this post that stop people on their way to similar goals. Of course it takes me a minute to catch my breath after every hit, but my mind and spirit are stronger than my emotions and fears. I will make it. I want to be the kind of person that, when looking back at how I reacted during the harder times, I can be proud of the story I have to tell and the way I conquered.
Now I ask for your help. Do you have any practices you’ve used in your life to stay positive and strong? I’d love to hear about them. I’d also like to throw a shout out to my friend Jessica who, when recently listening to me spinning my wheels, insisted I stay with her instead of paying for a sublet and hooked me up with a dog sitting job. Something much needed for the extra income and fur-baby therapy. She actually cares and helps instead of taking me as a buzz kill and running away. Something I’m sad to say I’ve become way too used to, but also strangely thankful for, as it’s helped me to appreciate people like her so much more.
Reply away my friends.