You know, when I first came to China, everyday was a new journey for me. Things like going grocery shopping or getting to and from my school were adventures on their own. Every morning, I woke up with excitement of what the day would hold. What new challenges would I face? Who would I meet? What experiences would I share with my friends and family back home? I was so immersed in each moment of everyday that I forgot what it was like to live back in the States–a feeling that I maintain to this day.
As great as the excitement and adventure was, everything must come to an end. Every peak has its valleys and over time, the excitement has faded and the adventures have become routine. My daily Chinese lessons on Rosetta Stone have turned into biweekly lessons and my weekly blog posts have become almost monthly.
It seems to me that this is common with any new enterprise we undertake; whether it’s a new diet, exercise routine, or discipline. Eventually the excitement wears off; it’s no longer fun to tell our friends about the new changes we’ve made in our life. All that’s left is to persist each day, or not.
In the spirit of New Years, I’ve written this short post; not only to share some perspective with anyone open to receive it, but also for me to work on writing more often. I find that when I don’t express my thoughts through writing, my mood changes and I spend more time in my head and less time living in the moment. I don’t want to miss out on this incredible opportunity that I have out here and I really do enjoy sharing my experiences–even if it’s not quite as exciting as it was the first few months I was here.
I’ve decided to stay here in Hefei for a second year. My contract will expire at the beginning of March, when I’ll spend a month in the US. But once April hits, China round 2 will begin. So for my New Years resolution this year I’m going to recreate the excitement and adventure of living as an expat in China. Now that I’ve hit a valley in my journey, it’s time to charge back up the mountain path and see what lies ahead!
In my next post I will tell you all about Christmas here in China. And about my trip to Chengdu to visit my wonderful Chinese friend, Lin, who I actually met in the States! But until then, Happy New Year to each of you and cheers to 2014!