The Last Large Goal

Posted on 09.09.2013


photoIn my list of longer term goals, there was only one left; one that I wasn’t sure was *actually* going to happen: the goal to move to Japan to train with my Sensei before time ran out.

There wasn’t a deadline to that, although I started to get  concerned when he decided to stop traveling to do seminars overseas a few years ago. It was about that time that I started going to seminars in Japan, so I got to see him that way.

That still wasn’t enough. I had always wanted to live in Japan, and actually learn Japanese. It was something that was a bit hard to do in a non-Japanese speaking country. When I decided to leave Germany last year, my original plan was to go back to the states and spend some time there because I missed my friends, family, shopping on Sundays, crab cakes, free water in restaurants, good customer service, not getting yelled at on buses or by random old people, etc… But after applying to NUMEROUS jobs in numerous cities in the states, I finally had the voice of reason in my ear saying, “I thought you wanted to go to Japan, why don’t you send some applications over there, too?”, so on a whim and after getting a few leads, I shot over some applications and in a month, I’d accepted a job with a company in Japan.

It almost feels to good to be true, and I know that technically, I’m not really going to go unless that visa application goes through. I’ve got 2 months until I know if that’s happened, but I’m hopeful it’ll go through easily.

But now after a few years of wondering if it could or would happen, I have the chance. I get to go over and do something I’m good at, and hopefully I’ll get to stay for more than a year and get great at Japanese, and get TONS of time with my Sensei! It’s a bit scary to be at the end of my bigger goals, because it means I’m going to have to make some new ones and I’m not quite sure what they could even be at the moment. But on the upside, it means I might get to stop ‘running’ for a while and float along and just enjoy being there.

I’ve learned, though, that if I’m going to make such a huge jump again, I’ll have to do a bit more planning: I have nearly depleted the retirement account I opened 9 years ago, and I now know how much it costs to live without working for 6 months (on the low end, I haven’t paid to stay anywhere!!). I know I was ahead of most other people my age due to the lack of children in my life, but now I’m back to square one, 9 years later, in terms of funding my retirement. I will have to put away A LOT in my new job if I want to make that back, and I’m completely prepared to do that. This job will be paying me more than 2x what I was making in Germany, which is a great start. Now as long as I can survive until the first payday next year… I’ll be on my way.

Applying to this job and doing all of the stuff that goes along with it now (online freelance searches, forms, lots of emails to lots of places, etc) has really made it hard to finish other things, like the thousand cranes (I’m close though), reading a lot, learning Japanese, TEFL cert, etc. There were a LOT of things on my 2013 list that aren’t going to get done by December 31… the upside is that once all of this is settled, I will be able to move REALLY quickly on the other things, Japanese and TEFL cert being tied for second place. I’d like to have those two done or near completion by the time I fly over. We’ll see how that turns out!

I’m glad I wrote down all of the goals, it feels *really* good to cross things off. Even better when I remember people telling me it wouldn’t/couldn’t happen 🙂 I’m only 31 AND HAVE ACCOMPLISHED ALL OF MY GOALS. I wonder how many other people can say that.

So now I get to start thinking about *the future*, I guess. And try to read and fold more in the meantime. At least I can finally say I know what I’m going to be when I grow up?

Posted in: goals, life, teaching, travel