I’m still in Peru and still very much outside of my comfort zone, however some things have changed. I have answers! Yes I’ve sent out a question to the universe and I have gotten a reply. At least that’s what I’m thinking and am sticking with! I have in one way or another figured out why I’m feeling so much out of my comfort zone. It’s not due to the direct traveling aspects. Such as being homesick, speaking another language or learning about a new culture. It’s being confronted with the realities of my own culture. The realities I’ve abandoned since realizing that they don’t work for me at all.
The biggest one is being surrounded by people I’m not comfortable with but supposed to be ‘’friends’’ with. The reason for that is, we all came from the same university and we’re all enrolled in the same internship program. This supposed ‘’friendship’’ is not based on mutual liking of one another but on a pure benefits base. Mind you I’m not saying taken advantage of or anything negative like that, it is really purely because we’re all in a ‘’strange’’ country that the university wants this ‘’friendship’’ to be in place.
The reason I’m not comfortable is because I do not want nor need this so-called friendship. I understand the reasoning behind it but I am a solo traveler, have been for the past three years. I know how to figure things out. Now I know having someone around that could help is nice obviously, I just don’t experience it that way because I can’t help but wonder about the motives behind it. The benefits. I do not support any relationship of any kind that at the core is about benefits. It fuels my anxiety and spikes my stress levels.
Don’t get me wrong I’m not saying that they are awful people or anything in that trend. I honestly don’t know that as I have taken the executive decision to not involve them in my life anymore. For all the reasons given above and some more. That brings us to the second thing I’ve ruled out. Which is the small talk again. I’m currently living in a house with other students who have either come for internships or for study abroad programs. Seeing that we share a kitchen I sometimes run into them and we have a small chat. A small talk chat (read my opinion on small talk here).
For long time My Story Of I readers the following comes as a no brainer. I’m not doing it anymore. I greet everybody but that’s where things end. I cannot be wasting my precious time answering the following questions every time I’m making myself dinner. ‘’How are you liking Peru?’’, ‘’How is your internship?’’, ‘’What all do you do there?’’ ‘’Where are you from?’’ etcetera, etcetera. I’m assuming you catch my drift. If I have to go through this conversation every time I make dinner instead of becoming a psychologist I’m going to urgently need one.
Yes I know, the nice factor. I still haven’t figured that part out yet, but to be honest I’m not all too concerned about it for now. Also a part of me believes this is due to conditioning that I believe having small talk is the nice thing to do. Either way, right now my one and only objective is to take care of me in the best way possible. I can’t help but wonder how this experience would have been if I had not started My Story Of I, if I had not gone to Milan (my first ever solo adventure).
The girl that I was back in 2016, before any of the above, would’ve been miserably happy. Suffering greatly through the small talk and bonding for the sake of doing what’s ‘’right’’. Ignoring all the signs that something is off. Labeling the signs as part of being anxious instead of realizing that she is in need of some kind of intervention to save, help and relax her. However now, the girl I am now on 28 October 2018 won’t let that happen. I am helping myself in the best way I know how and for once I do not feel guilty for doing so. I’m living My Story Of I. I’m writing the book of my life with every day that passes and I do not feel guilty for making this Peru experience great in the best way I know how. Trusting my intuition, calming my anxiety and taking things one step at a time.
That’s where I’m at now. Abandoning another part of the realities of my ”own” culture, in order to write my best life story possible. I can’t help but feel incredibly grateful to have been blessed with this opportunity. The opportunity to be in Peru and experience all that I have and will. Also grateful for the past two and a half years for opening my eyes and the door to a world I’d dreamed about daily and I am now living in. I am in fact one lucky girl.
With everyday that passes I shed the realities of my own culture that I am ‘’supposed’’ to live with and apply the ones that actually work. I guess I’m learning why it is and has been so important for me to take active control of my life. So now I’m once again at the point of leaving a part of me behind, this time the realities of my ”own” culture. Just this time I’m anxiously ready for what’s to come.