Having left China about 3 months ago exactly, I’ve realised a few things. Other than knowing that job wasn’t for me and that big companies aren’t my thing; I know I could’ve endured longer and probably even learned to love China and just get another job at an international school that paid more.
They say in your 20’s you should grind and make money so that you could ease up and build in your 30’s. But as much as I really wanted that- as it was my purpose for being in China- I really couldn’t just work for money and not be happy. My happy mattered more, and making an impact (as I’ve secretly wanted to) is valuable to me staying in a place.
I made amazing friends as I say often, maybe every other week I say that? Maybe. Two people I love dearly and spent time with always come to mind, beside my awesome roommates. Had I stayed I would have been adventuring, dating, and in a new job. I think I could’ve tried a new job and managed another few months til atleast Autumn. I made good money, entertainment prices were nothing to complain about and tutoring gigs were amazingly paid (some of the highest I had ever seen). I could’ve learned to make the cuisine as well as speaking the language to get around the cuisine. I could’ve travelled outside of Shanghai and done a few non China trips. I even planned on finally going to Dubai for NY. I could’ve done a lot of things but I didn’t.
I left and didn’t do any of the”could have” things above. I won’t be moving out in the way that I wanted to and making a dent into car and house payments like I had planned to. I won’t even have this third language because I honestly didn’t like the sound of it until my 5th week of lessons (2 weeks before leaving). I also won’t be as versed as I could have been having lived there and gained a deeper understanding of the culture and the racism within the culture.
Anyways, having left I have met some people that I didn’t even know had opportunities to travel, along with some that have travelled and are considering coming back because of homesickness. I literally got so angry with myself because I could’ve been a better example and even wrote about what I was doing or how I was managing so people could kind of get a better idea and seize their opportunities. I really wished for their sakes that I stood the test and lasted longer, so I could have been their friend when they were abroad and crying because they didn’t know how to deal with x!
Anyways, having left I’ve been faced with people that have questioned why I came back. It’s not easy to make the decision to move, nor is it easy as a traveller to make the decision to return and cut something short. But this time, I’ve been reacquainted with people that really do value the work that I do and see the inspiring role model in me. I’ve said I’ve wanted to be a role model, but I haven’t even tried to be one for over a year. I run from that characteristic. A role model is outside of my comfort zone but I’m going to step into it during my next trip.
Having left, I know what I want to do. I know how I want to grow (skills like improving my Spanishto sit the intermediate test). I know the duration of time I want to complete (academic year), with who (lol noone), why and what to do when times get tough.
So it was good why I left. I’ll restart for the third time alone and be that friend when you’re crying or frustrated because you don;t know how to manage with x. I’ll even make a better attempt at doing number 2 of my list of reasons why I left the company in China (see image below)! xx