The not so short daily short.
I am the worst at making decisions. I’ll mull something over for days, weeks, and months before I can come to a conclusion. This is a story about how I made a decision.
For the past few weeks, and dare I say, months, I have been deciding whether or not I wanted to renew with the Fulbright Program here in South Korea. I love Korea. I love the food, people, and culture. I love teaching. I love making money and convenient travel. It’s quite the baller lifestyle and if you’re going to live abroad – I believe that South Korea is the place to do it.
This past weekend, I participated in the Fulbright Spring Conference right here on Jeju Island. Despite past months of blog posts about “Yeah, I’ll probably only be here for one year,” I started feeling a tug.
You know, that annoying tug that says, “Maybe you should stay. Wait. No. Maybe you should go. Wait a second, let’s think this out. What, they want you to raise your hand if you’re going to renew? Better raise your hand, Sarah. Well, now you’re a liar Sarah because you don’t know if you’re going to stay. What’s that Sarah? You should stay because looking for a job is awful. Wait. You should go because you speak English and life would be a bit easier. You should probably just hover in the air for a year, that way you won’t have to make a decision.”
As you can tell, my inner dialogue is a horrendous companion at times. She’s a stunner, to say the least. However, this weekend I evaluated my future here in Korea and my future back in the United States. I have a lot going for me in Korea: I think I do a pretty good job at my school, I’m liked, and I enjoy waking up every morning in a foreign country. Plus, job security for up to three years. I also think there’s a lot going for me in the United States: attending graduate school for ESL education, using my teaching certificate, and advancing my career as a wannabe academic.
After mulling in my mind and going between the “I’m 80% committed, no 95% committed, wait, 50% committed to renewing, no, about 75% committed,” I have decided to return to the United States in July. It was no easy decision and it took me a long time to determine that I would come home in July.
However, I believe this only to be not the end of a story, but the beginning. Since coming to Korea, I’ve become interested in Asian Studies, Asian literature, and language study. I am very seriously considering attending graduate school to specialize in English language education with an emphasis in Asian Studies for the sole purpose of turning right back around to Asia.
So, you’re asking “So, Sarah, if Korea is the bee’s knees, why not stay?” Well, it’s because I believe I have things to take care of. I want to teach and study in the States, and hopefully (no, I WILL) return to Asia as an English language professional.
Was this an easy decision? Absolutely not, but I believe that this next step, stepping back to the USA in a mere three months, will help me become a better teacher.