Sunday, January 6, 2013

Finding Inner Peace

The timing for this trip could not have been more perfect. I had finally reached a point in my life where I felt like I was suffocating under all the pressures of school, friends, and personal life. A little over a month ago, I wrote a very personal opinion piece for a newspaper about mental health. Naturally, as soon as something is posted online, people from all over--people you don't even know--begin to criticize and question you. The anonymity of comments makes it possible for the attackers to be even more cruel than they might normally be. It spurred a lot of talk on Facebook, Twitter, and random websites I had never even heard of before.
At the same time, I was a newly initiated member into my sorority. Don't get me wrong, I LOVE my sorority sisters, but being a new and a transfer student, I had no idea where to go with my problems. My grades started suffering, as did my social life. It was time to leave the country.
Coming to Thailand is absolutely amazing. The people are friendly and welcoming. Taking a step outside of my life in the states allows me to gain a valuable perspective--that there is so much more to the world. There is beauty everywhere around me (in the temples, landscape, and people), and there is much more to explore.
Sure, sometimes I'll do things just so I can say I did it-- (Bangkok Red Light District and eating a cockroach?!)-- but the most powerful moments on this trip have been the times of relaxation, meditation, and cultural exploration.

On another note, today I accomplished one of my goals-- learning to count to 10 in Thai. Let's see how well I remember it tomorrow.



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