Sunday, April 28, 2013

Looking Back, Forging Ahead

A year and two months ago, on the eve of my journey to Georgia, I was somewhat resigned to the fact that my experience there would be my last opportunity to live abroad. Being a ducks-in-a-row kind of gal, I was quite certain of my life trajectory until July of 2014, and after that, I had a fairly concrete plan of what would happen next. When I returned from Georgia, I would be with Citizen Schools in New Bedford for two years, and during that time, I expected to move in with my boyfriend and his family, to get engaged, and to marry. After completing my AmeriCorps service, I would go to graduate school or go back for a second undergraduate degree, graduate, and begin my career.

Well, that's not exactly how things turned out. I did get engaged in July and married in November, but not to that boyfriend. I was lucky enough to meet my other half and life partner, Patrick, in Georgia. To clarify for those of you that are doing the math, yes, I was engaged to a man that I had known for four months, and we married after knowing each other for ten months. Honestly, I couldn't be happier or feel better about our decision, but I could have never forseen this.

Because I am married to Patrick, I know that I will live abroad again. Our interest in different cultures and languages is what got us out of North America and brought us together in the first place. So, Georgia wasn't my last hurrah, but rather the beginning of a new, more adventurous chapter in my life. Due to some changes at work, which are still under wraps, I will be leaving Citizen Schools on positive terms at the end of June. This means that instead of waiting until 2014 to go abroad, Patrick and I will be teaching English abroad, hopefully in Russia, this fall. That's about five months away.

These days, I'm counting down to the end of a few parts of my life and the beginning of others.
6 program days until the on-campus WOW!
8 program days until the Mock Trials WOW!
19 program days remaining
9 weeks of work remaining (one of which is a vacation week)
9 weeks until Patrick and I are together and ideally done with being in a long-distance marriage
12 weeks until our CELTA certification class begins at Teaching House Boston

Truthfully, as soon as the after-school program is over, I know I'll feel alive again. Until then, I'll be counting down the days and hours until the daily grind is over and real life begins again.