Well…

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So I’m sitting in my room, and it’s 1:35am…and it occurs to me that, much like 10th Doctor…

…I don’t want to go.

But, also like 10th Doctor, it’s not truly saying goodbye.  It’s regenerating into another person.  The same person yet different at the same time.

I’ve been milliseconds away from tears the past couple of days saying goodbye to the kids, my aunt, and my grandma.  And tomorrow, I’m going to ugly cry as I say goodbye to my parents.

Of course, it’s not really “goodbye.”  We have Skype–which we finally got to completely work on the computer tonight so we can hear AND see each other!–and Facebook.  And I’m planning to come home for Christmas break when I figure out when that is.

But it’s goodbye in person.  It’ll be awhile before I can hug them.  That’s gonna be tough sometimes.

It also occurs to me, sitting here, that I do want to go.  I want to go for Younger Me’s sake.  See, several years ago when I was still in college, I had horrible social anxiety.  I would go to class and occasionally go hang out with a friend (the few I had), but otherwise I would sit in my dorm room watching TV and hanging out on the Internet, wondering why I couldn’t make myself get out and be a little bit more social.  I wanted to be social.  I just didn’t know how.  I wanted to do things and travel.  I wanted to be different than I was…but it was hard.

After I graduated, I got a full-time job at Gatton, and that helped me be more social.  It made me get out of comfort zone on so many levels.  It helped me talk to people and better communicate with them.  I realized that I while I loved my students and working with them, I wanted to go to Japan.

Now I have that opportunity.  I have something about which some people dream and work toward.  And I know that if I didn’t take this opportunity, I would definitely regret it.

So, while I am sad for the moment, I know it won’t be forever.  Life isn’t one continuous thing forever and then we die.  It’s a bunch of little phases that connect together.  This is a new phase, and when it’s over, I want to look back on it and think, “Wow, I had an awesome time.  That was a great experience, and I’m really glad I did it.”

Younger Me, we did it.

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It’s Crunch Time

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I seriously almost forgot I still have this blog.  And here I am wanting to make a YouTube channel, too.  I don’t even know what’s wrong with me.

Oh yeah, I do.

I’M GOING TO JAPAN SOON.

communitypanic

itcrowdfire

Those were the most accurate representations of how I feel right now.

I think many other people are feeling this way, but everyone’s sort of keeping it to themselves while I’m over here like “I’m panicking, are you panicking? You’re not panicking? WHY AREN’T YOU PANICKING?” when they really are.

Okay, okay.  I’m not full-on PANICKING or anything.  But I am having emotions and feels and things I don’t want to deal with, and yet I have to deal with them.  Strangely, I’m not that worried about what will happen once I get there.  I’m more feeling like I’m not sure if I want this part of my life to be over yet.  As someone once said, all change involves pain.  Big changes sometimes involve big pain.

I just keep trying to remind myself that I am planning to come home for winter break, and I may decide not to stay another year.  I feel this approach works.  This is how I’ve been living my life since I graduated high school, and it’s worked out so far for me.

So, updates on JET stuff.

– I bought a crap ton of omiyage on Monday for my principals, vice-principals, and teachers.  Almost everything is edible.  If that’s one thing JET teaches you, it’s BUY EDIBLE OMIYAGE.  I also went to a local state park where there’s a gift shop and found some cool stuff I can give as gifts or show my students.

When I told the lady who runs the gift shop my purpose for buying things, she proceeded to load me down with some pamphlets, booklets, and coloring books about southern Kentucky.

See, children, southern Kentucky is different than northern Kentucky.  When I said this, the lady looked at me and said, “I know, right?”  Good to know someone is on the same wavelength.

– Bought everything else I needed i.e. toiletries to keep me good for a couple of months.  I’m one of these people that has weird toiletry needs like enamel toothpaste and special shampoo because I have a form of dermatitis on my scalp that affects mostly older men and babies.

JETlings, don’t be afraid to bring your own stuff for awhile.  Especially if you really need it.  I’m hoping while I’m using up what I have, I can find suitable alternatives for most things.

And if not, I’ll be living an hour away from Costco.

– Forgot indoor shoes.  I’m just going to buy a new pair of black flats.  I wear black flats for everything.  Got to go Thursday and get these.

– My parents will be using my old laptop with a working webcam on it, so I replaced the casing on it.  That was FUN.  I’m not even being sarcastic.  I didn’t realize that some things actually plugged into the case itself, so it was kind of fun taking it all apart and very carefully replacing everything and the screws.

The broken case is gone, but the software remains a mess.  Something to do tomorrow.

– State background check came in.  So I am cleared for landing…in Japan.

– My friend/JET sempai/new neighbor Geneva told me today that my new apartment is being cleaned out today.  THEY ARE PREPARING FOR MY ARRIVAL.

– I decided to buy some stuff from my predecessor.  I’m buying her bike (which is red and super cute and I’m really excited about it), kitchen stuff that includes rice cooker and oven, a 27-inch monitor (makeshift TV), and electric heater for $270.  I was going to buy her desk, too, but the girl moving into her apartment asked for it first.  That’s okay, I can live without a desk for awhile.

Now I just have to pay her…somehow…Paypal?  Haha, I don’t have money.

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A few more days.  I really cannot think about it.  Denial is my friend.

But it’s nice knowing there’s a huge group of people all over the world that are having these same emotions.  And all the current JETs are like “Babies, ya’ll need to calm down.”

Future JETlings, please know that it’s okay to feel this way.  It’s okay to be super excited and ready for this new adventure.  It’s okay to be freaking out and hyperventilating and pulling the covers of your bed over your head to block out the world.  Eventually, though, we have to get on that plane and go to the new places in our lives.  And it’s going to be okay.  After all, we’re going on an adventure…

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I’m Pretty But Tough, Like a Diamond…Or Beef Jerky in a Ballgown…

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Updated the blog to seem more LEGIT.

Wurd.

For realsies, though, I added a sidebar with some social media links, a tag cloud, an Instagram feed thingie…

I’m turning into a BLOGGER.

Ahem, anyway.  Some updates in JET-land.  I have two weeks until Pre-Departure Oriententation, and, well, leaving.  I am trying not to freak out and to be excited and remember all of the reasons I want to go Japan, but sometimes I can’t help it.  The freak out creeps in around the edges like a shadow.  It comes to me at night before I go to sleep and makes me sad.

I think this is normal.  A lot of people go through this.  It’s a huge life change.  I think I’d be going through the same thing if I had to move to another state in America, which would have been my backup plan if I hadn’t gotten into JET.

My advice to current and future JETs is, if you start feeling this way, try to remember all of the awesome things you love about Japan.  I made a list this morning of everything I’ll be able to do and see and experience.  It was actually pretty helpful.

I talked to my pred, and she understands about not being able to afford her car.  I don’t think she’s happy about it (I guess I wouldn’t be, either), but she does understand.  It’s also harder on both of us that I’m not getting her apartment.  So if she wants to sell anything to me, she’ll have to move it to the new apartment.  She’s still up in the air about that.

I’ve bought pretty much everything I need to take with me to Japan.  Still have omiyage and a pair of indoor shoes to get, but otherwise, I’m good.

My state background check went through, so I’m cleared to go!

I actually got another email from my supervisor last night telling me I have an apartment in northern Hokuto (which I knew, thanks to Geneva) and that he was sending me a schedule for when I arrive in Hokuto.  An actual SCHEDULE.

According to the schedule, the first day, I’ll go get registered at City Hall and get my hanko (personal seal you use for paperwork, etc.), open my bank account, and get a cellphone.  Then it’s off to meet the Superintendent for the Board of Education.  Finally, I get to go to my apartment…but that’s it…so I’m not sure what I’m supposed to do for sleeping.  Hoping Geneva, who is my neighbor, friend, and official JET sempai will help me with that.  The next day, I’m supposed to visit my schools and probably meet the principals.

Geneva said she’s supposed to take me and the other new girl to some places around Yamanashi, so that’s exciting! I really want to see the sunflower field in Hokuto, walk the streets of Kiyosato, go hiking through the Beautiful Forest, and just see as much as possible.

14 days…

*breathes* I can do this…

Note to self: buy new flumpool single at Tower Records in Tokyo