Today marks the three year anniversary of when I first arrived in Korea. It’s hard not to think about those first few days here and the weeks before I left.
A few months before I came to Korea, the contract at a job I was working at had maxed out and I was left without a job. The job I had been working at was a typical 9-5 job and while it really wasn’t that bad, I knew that a life behind the desk was not what I wanted to do with my life.
I had researched ways to move abroad, since it seemed fun to do, but I never considered that it would actually happen. I found a few recruiters for jobs in Asia and I sent emails, not expecting much. A few got back to me and I started doing the paperwork, even though I didn’t think it would happen.
As the weeks went on, I didn’t hear much. In early May, I visited my sister in New York and shadowed the photographer at her company for a week. It was the coolest job ever, since this is what I had studied in college, but gave up on it since I didn’t think it was realistic to have a job in photography. This mini internship gave me a bit of a spark that I could actually do something with my degree and the field that I truly love. It was also during this week that I got an email from a recruiter for jobs in Korea telling me a school needed someone ASAP and if I could have an interview the next day. I had that interview and they offered me the job on a Monday. By Thursday of the next week, I was on a plane to Korea.
Everything happened so fast that I don’t think I had time to prepare myself properly for it. The first month was pretty rough as I adjusted to a new country and teaching, which I had never done before and I was woefully unprepared for. However, like every other struggle I’ve had in Korea (and there were plenty), things got better. I didn’t think I’d make it out of those first few months, much less be here for three years.
There’s so much to say about the move, but it’s been the best choice I ever made. It’s not all glorious, but it’s been the spark I needed in life. I won’t be here forever, but I’ll always appreciate the time I’ve been able to live in beautiful Korea 🇰🇷