When I came to Hanoi last January, I expected to stay for five months. Five months. That's what i wanted. To take a breather from life, to evaluate what I wanted, to explore a new culture and travel. Five months in Hanoi and two more to travel.
When a good opportunity teaching presented itself I extended that five months to a year. One year was a natural progression from five months and I felt like I'd have a greater understanding and sense of belonging to the city if I stayed a year.
Here I am over a year later with no plans to leave. I confess, if i was still trudging to a classroom day in and day out that I don't know if I'd see my time here as indefinite. My transformation from school teacher back to PR came accidentally, I was looking online for a job for someone who wants to move here, and I noticed an ad for a vacancy in public relations. I figured, "why not?" and applied. I got it and once that occurred my mindset began to change a little bit more.
the decision to remain in Southeast Asia is not a difficult one in terms of adjusting to the culture or sacrifice. I feel like I have everything here that i need, and am blessed enough to have retained my former life in all of its glory as well. The factor that was making me unhappy was the career one, the fact that I didn't belong in a classroom, it didn't inspire me or make me happy. I knew I was a good teacher, and I took away incredibly valuable insights and tools from my time in front of a chalkboard, but it wasn't me. I wanted to have it all. I wanted the life I have made for myself here to fit into the aspirations I've built for myself as well.
Since I've landed the PR job, and begun heading to the office daily, I've found a significant shift in my demeanor. I am happy, composed, fulfilled. I feel successful for the first time in my life. I am inspired to do my best, to grow, to take this golden opportunity I've been presented with and turn it into something incredible. I've never been so excited about work in my life, but also scared. Scared that i'll fail, scared that i won't live up to my expectations, scared that I'm not as great as I think I am. I guess this is because when something is important to us, we're more nervous about losing it, or it being taken away. I've never really cared about a job or opportunity like this before.
I've entered the world of the unknown, because while I am working in public relations, I'm doing it in a foreign country, and I'm not even really focusing on the PR aspect of the industry but actually acquiring new business. My job is essentially to meet the movers and the shakers in this country and try and have them work with my company. how incredible is that?
Work doesn't feel like work, and it honestly feels like I am living in this dream world where everything I want comes true and at some point I have to wake up. I hope not for a while. I'd like to sleep in :)