“Tadaima…Deshou?” so the title reads, meaning “I’m home…right?”
It’s been quite a while since I’ve last updated and there are still many things that I want to post about from Japan, but considering my habits of not returning to wordpress regularly…I’ll write what I feel when I feel like it and I feel that right now is a good time to post about my homecoming…a reflection of my life no longer in Japan.
I came home on the 10th of January. I stopped in Washington for a week to visit Josh and see the sights. We had so much fun! We saw the Space Needle in Seattle, walked to the pier and went on a ferris wheel, spent ALL out money at an arcade and played with a children’s toy on the pier until it was too cold to stay out any more ^^ I was so high on life at that time that I didn’t care where I was. America, Japan, Europe, Zimbabwe, wherever! I had friends with me and that’s all that mattered. Coming home to Wisconsin however…was a bit different.
I caught up with many of the friends I’ve been separated from these past few months and we all had a blast! There are still many more that I need to see but due to distance they’re a bit difficult to get to without a car. I’ll see them soon so I’m not worried…but I must say I was troubled by one thing when I came back. When classes started again at my university, things were hauntingly familiar. I felt like I had forgotten everything I once knew about my college and its curriculum but…there was this innate sense that I had on certain things. Almost like muscle memory for your brain. It was a challenge to adjust though. I struggled with assignments and felt depressed for a while. I missed my friends in Japan…deeply. I would check facebook and skype often to see if any of them responded to my messages or if they were online. I ached to see them again.
I felt as if I had come back enlightened. Like in The Allegory of the Cave, when a prisoner is freed from her shackles and leaves the cave to experience the outside world. She sees the sun, the grass, the sky, the animals…a whole new world has been opened up to her. She can do things she never thought possible and learn things that were just awe-inspiring. I learned to grow when I was abroad. I came to learn new things about myself and the world around me. I was free. And now I have to return…return to my cave. I didn’t know how to live there anymore. I didn’t know how to continue my growth after having been in an entirely new environment. I had to use techniques I used once before to get my homework done. It was slow in coming to me, but still there in my memory…but that’s not what I wanted. I didn’t want to revive old habits and return to the life I had before I left. I wanted to create a new one, or at least one different than before. I struggled with how to do that, which only made me pine for Japan all the more.
One day it clicked. I didn’t know how to grow because there wasn’t anything new at this college. I had no new opportunities to grow. After having been offered an internship by my travel adviser, I had a new goal. I had something to work towards, to work for. What I needed was an outlet for growth, something meaningful to me that I can dedicate my time to…and I’ve finally found just that. I’ve been working at this internship for a while and I’m proud of all that I’ve planned so far. In my high I decided to take on other outside projects as well. I’ll be busy this semester, but I’ve rediscovered my passion for graphics, web design, promotional design and drawing. My creativity flows now, allowing me to embark on another journey.
Wish me luck on this one! Expect some belated Japan updates int he future!