Taken by our Taiwanese teachers – that’s me in red on first arriving in Chiayi. Oh how little I knew then…
One year ago, I arrived in Taiwan for the biggest adventure my young life has ever seen. It took a lot of courage, and had it been something sudden, I doubt I could have mustered up the courage. As it was, the longer-than-a-year wait I endured, plus all the preparations and money I threw in, helped make the move inevitable. I was, of course, friggin excited, but it was a scary thing to do.
Looking back, it seems incredible that I actually took this step. I settled back into life here in the States so easily I can barely believe I spent the last year across the world. I feel as if it should have changed me more. It changed me a lot, but not in overt ways.
Now I’m attempting to hold onto that fearlessness I had before Taiwan. I remember sitting in the airport, just after saying good-bye to my family, and feeling only a grim and tired determination, not fear. After arriving, I only focused on being where I needed to be. I was acclimated before I knew it. Fear wasn’t a predominant feeling. And I don’t want to lose that. All the adventures waiting for me, all the things I plan to do – I don’t ever want to be too afraid to step out and do them. Traveling takes a great deal of courage and a bit of reckless abandon. I don’t really have that naturally – I tend to have to force myself sternly to do stuff outside of my comfort zone. It was easy in Taiwan when my comfort zone was basically zero, but here my comfort zone is pretty broad and inclusive, so I feel that I can already do a lot within it. However, some of my plans (Korea, Finland) would take me again outside of my bubble, so I need to grasp that fearlessness with tenacity.
My point is that I did something huge a year ago, and I want to look at my next few years with big adventures shining out of them as well. Here’s to hoping I can make it a reality. Here’s to holding on to fearlessness.
Another moment of fearlessness – going to Korea ALONE.