Sunday, January 13th, 2019
Holy moly, I’ve finally found the time and energy to sit down and write a little bit. The past few months have been go, go, go, go, go! No time to slow down. But now that I’ve officially started working, I am finally feeling a sense of routine and balance. I normally haven’t been a fan of the word, “routine,” but I’m discovering that it’s important for me to have some sort of consistency with my time. The past few months I’ve gone from road tripping down and up the West Coast, moving out of Seattle, visiting home, traveling to Vietnam, getting my TEFL in Krabi, traveling North to Chiang Mai, looking for a job, going back home for the holidays, and finally settling in with a job and a home. I’m tired just writing that…
But I’ve made Chiang Mai my home, and I’ve started a job at a beautiful international school. I’m so excited to say that I’m a kindergarten teacher to 20 hilarious and precious children. Finally reaching a goal I set a very long time ago.
I’m finally feeling grounded, centered, and stable. I’ve loved traveling around and finding my way – but it feels so good to know that every day I’m going to my classroom and helping these kids grow in this wild and crazy world.
Life outside of school has been beautiful as well – Thailand is a lush and adventurous country with so many things to do and places to explore. Last weekend I went with a group of friends to a beautiful campground – even though I had my $12 tent, the conditions were so perfect, I actually slept outside. I was laying in the middle of a big field with a clear view of the bright stars everywhere I looked. It was warm, dry, and no bugs. It was perfection. After the sun rose, we went to a natural hot springs and then a beautiful temple on a mountain tucked away in a cave.
I like it here…
And then there’s school… My heart expands whenever I think of my students. Not only is it amazing when things I teach my kids stick with them (I taught the word “mountain,” then Danny ate part of his sandwich at snack time and held it up and said in his cute Korean accent, “Teacher Andrea – mountain!” His sandwich did indeed look just like a mountain. Ahhh!) – but I want to cry each time a parent tells me that their child loves me and doesn’t want to leave after school. These kids are giving me so much purpose and inspiration. My creativity is also coming back and I’m so thankful for that.
Friday was Children’s Day and all the kids dressed up as their dream career. My classroom was full of doctors, soldiers, ballerinas, teachers, policemen, and even a couple of Supermen. One of the challenges at my school is a vibe of negativity – I won’t go into detail, but I’m working really hard to avoid the drama and focus on the positivity. One person looked at my kids and said, “The sad thing is that the majority of these kids won’t become what they want to be right now.” Why do we kill the dream??? I look at my students and I cannot wait to see what they will become – and I believe in them. I remember in elementary school, I dressed up as a forest ranger. That was my big dream when I was a child. Although I’m not officially a forest ranger, I spend a lot of my time in Nature and with the trees. Then in high school, I wanted to get into film (I was obsessed with the idea of directing music videos). I wasn’t in Hollywood, but working in production and marketing at a TV station for 8 years fulfilled this passion. And now my dream is to be a teacher and make our future a better place. My dream has come true – and I plan on guiding my students into believing that their dreams will come true as well.
I can’t wait to spend each week with these kiddos and keep teaching them new words, concepts, and morals. But I’m also excited to continue learning from them. A teacher and a student at the same time – this is what life is all about.
Can you handle the cuteness?? I can’t either…
Feeling so lucky.
I take back what I said earlier… I don’t like it here – I love it here.
Thinking of you all and sending you Thailand love!