These past few months have been bittersweet. I found a new job that I really enjoy and I have amazing perks that come along with it, such as free housing. All of the comfort and convenience that I didn’t have at my old, crummy job I now have; however, I find myself missing a huge piece that kept me afloat at my previous school–community.
When I tell you my previous job was a MESS, I am not being dramatic. Believe me and the 10+ teachers that also quit last year. The only thing that kept me from losing my sanity was the great group of teachers I had around me. We were a united front, a team of jokesters, a family. So many of my good memories came from them and all of the things we did together: dinner dates, going to the movies, traveling, going bowling, shopping, participating in the Color Run. We were there for each other in the good and the bad. I trusted my co-workers enough to vent, even if it were about the boss. I felt safe with them.
My new co-workers… I don’t even feel safe enough to tell them about my day.
On top of getting new co-workers, I’m also an hour away from my old neighborhood, a neighborhood in which I had built the beginnings of my life here in Thailand. Sure, I had lonely days, but nothing in comparison to what I experience now. I never had to worry about being in a hard place because I knew I had great people within walking distance: my closest co-worker was 10 minutes away; my friend, whom is like a sister to me, was literally around the corner; I knew those who ran a business up the street; heck, I even knew the chicken lady better than most people at my new job. And if I was ever truly in a bind, a quick bike or bus ride away would bring me to other good friends. Sure, I constantly was sweating in my room because I couldn’t afford using too much A/C and I didn’t have functioning appliances to make a decent meal, but I was very much happy and satisfied living there. It was my place with people I knew well.
Perhaps it’s my fault, maybe I could try harder to make new connections in this neighborhood. Or, maybe I still need time and space to heal from the reality that I’m not on my little street anymore.
This whole shift to this new job, in a new neighborhood, with new co-workers hasn’t been all terrible though, I managed to make one good friend; unfortunately, she had to leave early. When she left I was a wet-tissue-and-snotty mess. I curled up into the tightest ball, only coming out for my students and to shower. It took me a while to stop bawling, but I never regained a new friend.
So, now the new semester is starting soon and I did some research on the three new teachers coming in, to be honest, this may be another lonely year for me. I know it’s a bit silly to judge a person based on the little information they allow on their Facebook page, but I don’t doubt my strong sense/third eye of compatibility. I just know.
I have a dream job with dream perks, but my social & emotional life feels like a nightmare.
What strangeness is this–to have everything, but still feel like you have nothing at the same time.