Taking the Leap – Teaching in Thailand

I haven’t posted much lately. There is a huge, life-altering reason to this and I was waiting for the right moment to share it. That time is now.

I will be teaching English in a rural mountain village in Thailand among the Karen people this summer. And possible for longer periods of time in the years to come.

This is a huge decision for me, one that incorporates my love of travel and cultures with my recent past love of teaching. I am filled with purpose and excitement, as well as nervousness.

So many questions and challenges lie ahead. The obvious challenges of teaching English to children who speak a language completely different from my own. A new living situation outside my comfort zone without the modern conveniences I’m used to. The hard work of teaching I once knew so well. Beginning to learn a new language. A cultural set of values and social rules completely unknown to me.

And there’s the elephant in the room I must acknowledge. Fibromyalgia. The very reason I left teaching in the first place, when I was first diagnosed and getting out of bed in the morning was a huge achievement. I have come so far since then. But I still worry.

More details to come as I leap off the cliff and see what awaits below.

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About chronictraveler

Chronic Traveler starts as a dream, one that I thought I had lost, but that has slowly changed into a mission to realize and live that dream every day. In December 2007 I became seriously ill and the doctors did not know what was causing my illness. I had to stop teaching as my life tumbled into a never-ending nightmare of doctors, hospitals and tests. Finally, in May 2008 I was diagnosed with a chronic condition - fibromyalgia. I was only 26 years old at the time. I have had to give up teaching, and now work part-time at a performing arts center as I learn how to manage my condition and improve my quality of life. What helped me through the months of uncertainty and sickness, and continues to inspire me, was a new focus on what truly mattered to me: family, friends, gardening, the arts, and especially travel. I have always fed my soul by traveling, ever since I first stepped off the plane at age 16 in Kathmandu, Nepal to help with an orphanage's building project. Meeting new people and experiencing how they live and how they view the world infuses my life with a richness I was so afraid I would lose when the doctor first said, "You have fibromyalgia". This blog is my story, as I begin to forge a new path. I am embracing my life as it is, with the fibromyalgia pain and fatigue, and learning to do what I love regardless. It may mean I have to go slower and take more naps or breaks! But I am determined to learn how to travel and experience the world, and hopefully what I learn will help others like me who believe their medical condition stands in the way of their travel dreams.
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