Letting go of Hope, for good reason.

It’s 10:00pm. Both my hands are wrapped up in gloves drenched in hair dye as I attempt to give my best friend a new do. Then, the my cell phone rings. I look down at the phone, and it’s the recruiter I’ve been working with since late September for the teaching position with South Korea’s EPIK program. This is the phone call I’ve been waiting to receive for what has felt like forever. (Okay, more like…6 weeks) I quickly pull off a stained glove and answered the phone. 5 minutes later…conversation was over.

What I thought would be the most exciting news of my life turned out to be one of the most disappointing. After weeks of anxiously waiting for news about a job placement, I am told that “all placements have been given” by the co-owner of the recruiting company, Reach to Teach. He’s strategic in the delivery of this fragile news. First telling me the good news, “All your paperwork for Korea has been received.” (all $300 dollars worth of official documents)…Then, he hits me hard with the bad news that I’ve been wait listed for a position and the likelihood of being placed now is highly unlikely.

He tells me to think about what I want to do, and ends by saying, “Best wishes to you.”

My initial reaction to the phone call and the days since then can be summed up in 3 words. “WHAT THE HECK?”

That’s it?

All my time and effort down the drain.

I was upset to put it lightly, but I pushed my emotions aside for the night. It’s okay. No big deal. I did not think about it. Then I woke up the next morning, tears streaming down my face, chest heavy, mind clouded from a sad dream that I could not recollect. The news from last night hits me like a train again, before I could even get off my bed.  I am upset. Let’s deal with this. Get it all out now. It’s okay to be sad, disappointed, and hurt. After all, I had been wrapping myself so tightly around a dream that I felt was already well into the works. I had been telling every one that I should be leaving soon, any day now. Boy, was I wrong. The sting of devastating outcomes always hurts. I cannot lie to my heart or my head. The truth of it was I wanted something bad and I wasn’t going to get it. At least not now anyway.

Everything happens for a reason. Right? I keep telling myself so, maybe Korea just wasn’t in my cards. Maybe I wanted to go there for the wrong reasons. Maybe everything that seems logical in my planning really isn’t. I thought it was the right choice, but now I’m not so sure. Will I try again? YES, without a doubt. But will I try for Korea again? That, I’m not so sure.

I’m a bit lost in my way at this point with this whole teaching English and moving abroad deal. I still want to do it. But now I’m back to the drawing board with where to go, when to leave, and how to go about finding a job.

I’ve always been the type of person to research and plan every detail I can, but at this point. I’m tired. I’m tired of thinking about it. I’m tired of planning for it. I’m tired of weighing what could go wrong. I’m tired of thinking about what my family will say. How I will get by. How I might feel.

Instead, I’d rather just hit the ground running and see what happens. Because no matter the amount of planning one may do, shit happens. And I’m tired of shit happening to me, I want to make shit happen for me. And that, I think, requires the willingness for me, the controller of everything, to let go of some control.

I watched Jim Carrey’s Full Commencement Address recently, and he said something that really hit me.

“Take a chance on faith. Not religion, but faith. Not hope, but faith. I don’t believe in hope. Hope is a beggar. Hope walks through the fire and Faith leaps over it.” ~ Jim Carrey

I had plenty of hope that I would be packing my bags, and be teaching English in a Korean classroom and enjoying bulgogi and soju on my weekends. But all that hope? Amounts to nothing.

Perhaps, all of this is a blessing in disguise. The possibilities are endless, once more, as they always are. Maybe I could go hike Machu Picchu, run the Great Wall of China, get drunk on some Vino, and salsa my way into uncharted territory.

So I’m thinking maybe it’s time for me to take a chance on faith. Leap to wherever my heart desires, and just see, for once, without so much forced planning, where life will take me.

Let’s hold faith’s hand and leap over mountains together. Wanna come?

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Big Question Mark

“When are you leaving for Korea?”

This is the most frequently asked question that everyone has been asking me since I revealed the news that I will be taking an English teaching position in South Korea. The answer to that question though? Still unknown. Yep, it’s still one big question mark. EPIK, the English Teaching Program in Korea, has a lengthy drawn out hiring process. I have been waiting for weeks to find out about the details of where the job will be and when I will leave. It’s been a continuous waiting game during every step, from the time I submitted the initial application, the interview, and all the paperwork. That waiting game has been going on for about 4 months now, which doesn’t seem like such a long time when I think about it but the days are dragging on without any news of what’s to come.

Every time someone asks me that question, I get a little uneasy. It’s a simple question, but the fact that I can’t answer them is what bothers me. It’s the not knowing. Patience, Kimmy, patience. That’s what I keep telling myself. Because I know that once they send me that contract and the plane ticket finally gets booked, I may not even have a moment to catch my breath. Life will be moving in the fast lane, and things will change quickly. Whether or not I am ready for it, it’s coming.

There have been times that I already feel as though I am far away. When family and friends make future plans for this year, I can’t even engage myself in the conversation because where will I be? Oh yeah, on the other side of the world. Don’t get me wrong; I am delighted about my own personal plans. I just can’t help but feel sad that I cannot be a part of everyone else’s future.

All I have been trying to do in the mean time is enjoy the familiarity of my daily life, as I’ve known it thus far. All of life’s simple little pleasures that I often take for granted. Something as simple as being able to call my best friend without worrying about what time it is because we’re in the same time zone. Petting my dog until his little leg wiggles uncontrollably because he loves being rubbed. Driving…there’s this never-ending list of random things that I won’t be able to do once I leave. It’s bittersweet, to say the least.

Soon I’ll have an answer to that big question mark. Until then, I am here. This is my now and I need to enjoy it as best I can.

Inserting a little excerpt from an emo- poem I wrote at 22 because it seems appropriate. Simple corny end rhymes, but a reminder still:

So let us be who we truly are

No molds, no conformity 
Break the box
Strike the clock
It’s time to live in the now

Fuck the past
For it’s gone
And though the future comes fast
It is not yet here

Today is the focus
Right now is the moment
The only thing we will ever have
And I just can’t waste another minute of it 
Worried, scared, and sad.

“Let’s Just Be”

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