I haven’t sat down and posted really since I’ve moved. But you all know I’m in Tokyo by now. And I want to start by saying I have never felt more comfortable as far as where my feet are standing as I have these past two weeks. Everything is different from America and I still haven’t exactly figured everything out (such as having a decent diet), but it feels as if I’ve been here all along.
Since this post is basically just me talking up feelings of the moment I’ll include some photos just for relief. I know I ramble on sometimes^^;
For as I am as a person, internally, as you all know, I’m always back and forth. But again, through all of these things I feel about myself or my situations or others, I’m indescribably grateful for where I am right now.
I was told today, “You are comfortable with who you are. If you want to read a book all alone somewhere, you do it. Yeah, you might wish you had people to surround yourself with, or that you were more outgoing, but you are comfortable being on your own with out those things.”
It struck me in some way I can’t really put my finger on. Probably mostly because it came from a person I wouldn’t really consider to have paid much attention to me, and honestly I wouldn’t say really knows me.
Moving away, you’ll be surprised the people that are there for you. For me, the ones I thought I could rely on are the ones I’ve heard the least from. Of course I’m not saying they aren’t there. I’m a person that doesn’t reach out easily for help. Especially here, I want to be independent and rely on myself. But the people that have consistently reminded me that they are here for me, I wouldn’t have expected, and I value that. You really shouldn’t take anyone for granted in your life.
When you move far away you might think that you can escape everything back “home”, but you quickly realise that it isn’t the case. Who you are is simply who you are. The way you think, the way you act, it doesn’t change just because your environment does. If anything, it enhances. Being somewhere new and completely forced to take care of yourself makes you look 10x harder at who you are.
People here maybe are confused with me sometimes. Stoping to help someone who has dropped something, picking bugs off of the street and trying to find a patch of grass to place them. Little things like that that maybe seem to go against my usually grumpy looking face and solitary sittings. But I’m a gentle loner by nature, and always have been.
Trying to grow as a person has led me to often put on a fake mask of confidence in order to talk to others and take risks here in this country as far as communicating with locals goes. I’m conflicted sometimes because I wonder if students like myself are genuine and really represent ourselves as who we are, or if others too put on a front when beside others in order to reach out and have some connections here. (Overthinking… most likely.) For being praised by my new friends, family, and American friends for how I’ve grown and accepted myself, I still don’t feel internally to have a sense of self. I just am… unless that is the mindset you’re supposed to have with self acceptance. Human thoughts are complicated.
Another thing that pops up often is hearing how many countries talk of America. It doesn’t offend me, because I feel the same way, however, it does make me sad. To have always felt the same way about my home country, and then still move away and be considered different because I don’t act like the stereotypical American. Last semester when I met the girl from Brasil who said “Wow. You are so kind and patient for an American.” I really have thought a lot what it means to be labeled that way based on the countries we come from. I know as a single American I can’t change my country… But I hope as an individual that I can convince people to look at others an individuals. It doesn’t matter where we come from, we’re all human, and I think we should all be accepting of one another. We should be willing to help each other despite our borders between our governments or language barriers or cultural differences. We are all infinitely different, yet exactly the same. These barriers don’t define us, who we are inside does. And I hope people will begin to focus on that before judging others one day.
Maybe because it’s only been two weeks, I can’t yet convey my feelings in a way that seems to make sense. I’m overjoyed to be here. I feel comfortable. Despite my insecurities, I am who I am, and I like her. I’m looking forward to what I’ll learn from and experience here. And yet, I have this feeling of emptiness. That something is missing. I just honestly am not sure what that is. But I think it’s normal.
I hope to travel to a few places as the leaves begin to change. So I hope soon I can share more photos than just meaningless chit chat.
Until next time.