Whenever I imagined completing university, I had always thought about packing my bags and getting lost in the world. Straight employment was never on the agenda, but simply travel. Or if I did happen to work straight away, I longed for a career that requires me to travel. Either way, I wanted to be released from this prison we call the UK and pick up brand new perspectives.
When I found out that little old me was offered the opportunity of a lifetime to teach English to school kids in China, I couldn’t believe my life. Final year of university toiled me away with no mercy and the last thing I needed was the uncertainty of what life was going to be like post graduation. Despite being intrigued by the idea of teaching, I had never imagined myself in this role, nor had I ever considered such a profession in my career path.
Nonetheless, I’ve always thought it was such a profound skill to acquire and looked to most of my teachers and lecturers at one point as heroes. I’ve also occasionally been told that I would make a great teacher due to my sincere patience and understanding, which I can now see for myself.
It’s funny how a bad phase in life during final year actually made me apply in the first place. I had this ‘Get me out of England, there is nothing here for me, everything is annoying’ attitude which drove me to try something new and completely out of my comfort zone.
When I was actually offered the role I was absolutely shook.
Can I do this?
A year is too long
I’ll miss out on things
Will I experience racism?
Can’t even buy 3 for £1 plantain down the road anymore
A chunk of the most random questions and thoughts instantly ran through my head like clockwork.
It wasn’t that I didn’t think I was capable; it was the thought of moving to the other side of the world, 11-12 hours away from home, with a 7 hour time difference.
It’s almost like we don’t particularly realize how our sense of self is simultaneously molded by the people and environments we surround ourselves with and indulge ourselves in until they are no longer available. I can deeply imagine the frustration of failing to understand or be understood in the most basic situations like ordering food as well as feeling like a child all over again; extremely helpless, needy and vulnerable.
However, in this case, you have no one to hold your hand and aid you in navigating the brand new settings or to spoon feed you with all the knowledge you’ll need to get through the experience.
But in spite of it all, taking this huge leap is something I’ve needed to do for a very long time, and the universe has made it pretty clear that I must travel across the globe to fulfil it.
Asia is definitely a continent I have never travelled to, and although this would have eventually been the plan, I had no idea it would be this soon.
Here I am.
I’m looking forward to meeting my students and carrying out the relevant training to support them and where this new chapter takes me.
I’ve officially joined the YouTube family 🙈
I would love to document and share all of my experiences in Shanghai and any other city or country I plan to visit during my year abroad; predominantly through vlogs. This is another leap out of my comfort zone I have decided to take.
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