It’s been two days since I’ve arrived in Bangkok, Thailand, and it’s been an interesting ride. I’ve already had a two-hour massage, a mini-bout of food poisoning, nasty blisters on the bottoms of my feet, and a cold Chang beer.
I knew that coming here was a risk, a leap of faith, and “brave”, by the words of many (lovely) people. However, I don’t think I truly realized the gravity of this change until, well, now. Maybe I could never really grasp it until I got here. Still, it’s a bit shocking. I’m in a country where I don’t speak the language nor do I have a place to live. Alone.
Apparently this is Stage Two of culture shock. Where was Stage One? The stage where I am blissfully enamored with my home and unencumbered by its downfalls and difficulties? Not that I don’t like Bangkok. It is colorful, a sensory adventure, and there is a lot to explore. However, much like the beginnings of a relationship – PUMP THE BRAKES, WE JUST MET. Give a girl a second. I’ve also never lived outside of the U.S. before, and I chose a completely different atmosphere across the world.
I suppose I just want people to know that I’m scared and feeling vulnerable. I appreciate being thought of as brave, and I suppose by virtue of my being here, I am in a way. But, I didn’t take one look at Bangkok and say “Ha HA! This will be easy!” All I knew was that I wasn’t happy where I was in my life 6 months ago (and the year proceeding in a very sad and confusing stage in my life), and I needed to do something about it. Bangkok has always been in the back of my mind. I’ve literally been dreaming about this for a long time. And so, here I am. I know that humans are complex creatures, but to anyone I know who has or who is thinking about doing this – you don’t have to be “strong” to do this. You can be, but you can be scared shitless and still do it, too. Life is fleeting and I’d rather die knowing that I did something that I really wanted to do for me.
Sometimes you have to just do these things and hope that it works out. I’m hoping that mindset will allow for the struggles to roll off of me like beaded water (or my sweat).