Monday, August 12, 2013

A New Normal

            Hello, readers!  Morgan Skillett here, blogging from the sunny state of California.  The transition back from Thailand has been a tough yet quick turn around.  It almost seems unreal that just over a month ago I was in the most beautiful country in the world, surrounded by some of the most incredible people I've ever met.

            Since I left Thailand, I have had to get used to the American way of doing things all over again.  Instead of walking down the street to Cold Brew to get a coffee and chicken fried rice, I would have to drive in my car and go to two separate places to get that kind of service.  Not having fresh fruit, cheap frozen coffee drinks, pad thai and my favorite Thai beer at my convenience has been quite the adjustment for me.  Aside from all of the food, it is the people and beauty of the country that I miss. 

      When I'm not exploring California or hard at work at my internship, I reflect on my life altering experience on my summer abroad.  Coming back home has made me realize how truly different our worlds are.  After a quick recovery from a cold and serious jet lag, I jetted off to Cajun country to celebrate my brothers birthday.  Voodoo dolls on Bourbon Street are pretty much the complete opposite from seeing big beautiful Buddha statues sitting peacefully in the hills of Thailand.  Only a few short days after returning, I left home once again.  Packing up and moving to California has been one of scariest and nerve-wracking things I've ever done.  Driving away from my house the morning I left for Thailand was also one of the scariest thing I've done.  Through all of these experiences, I've learned that only the best things happen when you're out of your comfort zone. 
            Sure, it would be easy for me to have just stayed in Kansas during the summer around my job, family and friends.  I could have gotten an internship in Kansas and done just fine.  But here's the thing.  Fine isn't good enough for me.  I want more.  Life begins at the end of your comfort zone.  This is a new motto for me, and it has changed the way I not only view myself, but how I see the world and people around me.  I am so thankful and grateful for these experiences I've had this summer because it is helping me to grow in ways I never thought possible.  Thailand taught me to let go and trust in myself.  I went onto this trip a nervous wreck, only knowing one student that was I was going with.  Coming back to Kansas, I came back with new, incredible friendships and experiences I will cherish for a lifetime.  If I can pass one piece of advice to all of the readers, it would be to just do it.  Leave all your inhibitions and the 'what if's' behind and just do it.  For now, I will go through my diary and pictures of this amazing journey until my feet touch the Thai soil again.                        

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