Friday, September 23, 2011

In which things get personal

Things have felt...transitional for about two months, and I'm finally starting to feel like I'm getting settled into a routine, settled into the job and the way I'll be living here. As is always the case with a blog or anything public/private, the question is what is too private or personal. I know I haven't been doing this very long, and I'm still not sure if anyone's even reading, but this is where things are and this is why I haven't really been talking on here:

I spent a week at an orientation set up by my employers, to help prepare newcomers to teach and live in South Korea. And everything was fine and I was excited to see my school and was meeting other foreigners and networking some new, albeit probably temporary friends. Then the orientation ended, abruptly as it so often does, and I was at my new school. And depression set in. I went through a fairly bad bout of it in high school, as I know so many teenagers do, but it just hit again, worse than I'd had in a long time, and settled. It's still there, in the background, and I feel like I've been running for the last month trying to stay ahead of it.

Part of it is culture shock, I know. For anyone who doesn't know, the four stages of culture shock are: you love it, you hate it, you live with(in) it, you leave it and return to your home culture. First time I was out here, I got the honeymoon phase and, except for a few bad days, went straight from that to the live with(in) it stage. I hated rice for about a week, but never detested being here. This time around, it's more like I skipped the honeymoon first stage, and went straight into despising everything. And that's rough, when I'm still adjusting to a new school, to not being near my friends and the dear boyfriend (whose birthday it is, stateside, today. It's already the next day here), to not be able to see what's enjoyable about being here. I have great classes, great experiences, that don't feel as great as the bad stuff feels bad.

So I keep trying, knowing that this too shall pass. I knit, because if it doesn't make me feel better, it relaxes me. I've got multiple FOs to show off from the month I've been here, that I've entirely started and finished, and they just keep rolling out. But that'll have to wait for another day, as I'm at my sister's apartment right now, sans camera. Soon though. Maybe tomorrow.

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