Last week I wrote a lie. I filtered myself and what was really in my heart and mind. I said, “Regardless I’m dealing and happy.” Last week I was not happy. Last week I was troubled. I was stressed. I was hurt. Now yes, thank goodness good laughs and Fulbright family have healed a needing soul; but from the 16th to the 20th I was fogged with negativity from my own thoughts and the Thai world around me.
First I hit a stump having to leave a fun planned English Camp early. I was really sad. My one time to not feel filtered and be my true American self was cut to 12 hours rather than the approximate 2 days I had planned. Going home to loneliness and my own head was worse. I could have; should have, picked up a book, colored, played my Ukulele ANYTHING. Instead I sulked. Not literally crying, I just felt lifeless. I had to remind myself that this has happened in America and it happens when I feel listless. Which I have been with all my classes canceled.
Next, during dinner on Sunday I was told that some Thai teachers were teasing my Thai father and ‘mad’ that he “takes the foreign teachers out to travel and eat TOO much because now they are
FAT & UGLY” I’ve been luckily warned that this would happen. That being called fat in Thailand is common and not really meant to be harsh the way people in America understand it. Example: one day you’re SUAY (beautiful in Thai) and the next you’re FAT. Well this was the first time I heard it. I expected it but ugly. That hit harder because I have had to stop wearing makeup and wear my glasses because I have a stye on my eyelid. I was very nervous to show up like this to work. I felt embarrassed of how I looked because in Thailand looks mean A LOT. I have come a long way to noticing, realizing and appreciating my natural beauty. Back home all summer long make up rarely touched my face and I still felt fabulous. In Thailand I feel as if I have spiraled 6 years back to my self conscious high school self. ALSO this meant that Thai teachers were gossiping behind my back, an aspect that is sour memory reminding me of home and the battles of living in a small town. ***Note: I’m good now and yes I know I’m pretty and not fat, it just sucked at the time.
To top it off there is drama in the office two days later. The day after I write in my journal that ‘tomorrow will be a better day I have the choice to make it better’ Well not quite. What seemed like foreign teachers vs. Thai teachers and stress about contracts, misunderstandings and he said/ she saids. I was done. I felt like a Looney Toons mountain that was beautiful and full of life and then ends up falling lifeless because it was a prop the whole time.
I am the sand that moves with the ocean back and forth through high and low tide. In other words I feel what others feel and move with the energy of the atmosphere. The office was hostile. Luckily bad events heal with time and I was able to talk to some Thai teachers in order to find understanding.
The Now It’s Better Part:
I stopped being filtered. Stopping myself from being who I am is a toll on me mentally and physically.
I went to an English Language English Seminar about Communicative Language Teaching! I refreshed my mind on what I learned during my TEFL/TESL certificate and was able to be a student again! We were broken up to teams and my team won 1st place! This really gave me some teaching motivation and ideas to use for next semester.
I was able to see Fulbright fam. After the seminar I was dropped off at Daniel’s school where other Fulbrighter’s were holding an English camp and had a good Saturday night with good food, drinks, and laughs.
Next up: Starting a new lesson, A Reunion, finding an internship,Bangkok, Chiang Rai
Wish me luck with my new lesson! Elaine ❤