Jonathan and I returned from our amazing year in Korea almost a year ago. After all these months we still cannot figure out what to do with our lives. Should we go away again? Should we stay here and build a life? Should we just move to BC?
Our year in Korea was so carefree and wonderful that often I wonder if it was worth it to leave Korea so soon. The biggest reasons why we went back to Canada was fear. Fear that we will be left behind our peers, that we (primarily me) would not be able to get a job and build a career. When I write it down it seems silly to me to worry about such trivial things. In my mind it is not so trivial Isn’t it more important to have a fulfilled and happy life rather than build a name for yourself in the business world?
When I think about the bigger picture I want to leave Canada and go live somewhere else. I want to buy a flight to Shanghai, Singapore, Hong Kong or Seoul and live abroad again. What’s the point of saving up to buy a house when the bubble will burst again? Why settle down and bring children into a world that is slowly being destroyed by people? When I think about the state of our world and our society I become very sad and I want to go and see the mountain gorillas in the wild before they disappear, volunteer at a coral reef and talk to locals about their lives. I want to leave North America because it is falling embarrassingly far behind Asia.
However, when I start to think smaller I become incredibly scared about deviating from the plan that my parents want for me. I need to work at a job that will make my resume stand out from the rest, I need to start saving for a down payment for a home, I need to think about when I will have a child. Don’t I want to have a beautifully decorated home? Don’t I want to stay close to my family and friends, at least for now? If I go abroad I won’t be able to mountain bike in the Don Valley, have the food that I like or even have my cat around me.
What is it that I want?
Jonathan and I recently turned down a job offer from Shanghai. The teaching position for Jonathan would have been decent and I would not have a tough time finding a non-teaching job in Shanghai. However it is still a risk. It was an incredibly tough decision, it took days to figure out but we finally decided that we would unfortunately say no to the offer. We decided that if by October we are both unhappy with our jobs in Toronto that we would start looking for work in Shanghai or elsewhere.
What do you guys think? Would you stay or would you go?