The first chapter of my brand new blog. How exciting! When I first started a blog in 2013, my main goal was to write about wanderlust and travel. I started it with the hopes of pursuing my traveling goals and reaching out to those that had that same urge for new experiences. With this new blog, I’ve decided to really buckle down and write about all things that make my soul happy. For me, that number one thing is still (and will always be) traveling. But my perspective has vastly changed since moving to Europe. I have been living in Prague, Czech Republic for a year and nine months. Prague has taken me in its hold and has yet to let me go (not that I’m complaining). I feel like a completely different person now from the one I was when I hopped on that plane almost two years ago. And how couldn’t I be? I’ve been soaking up new cultures and trying to adjust to a completely different lifestyle. I see the world from a completely new perspective. And when I visit home, it feels like the only thing that has changed is me. I know that I’ve touched on this a bit in my old blog, but it’s true that being here isn’t a constant dream state of living. Although I’m living in Prague, I’m still living. I live paycheck to paycheck, I have horrible days, I’ve had heartbreak, I get homesick. Just because you’re in a completely different place doesn’t mean that your problems go away. You just have to approach them differently here.
So, how did I get here? Good question. Well, two years ago, I was desperate to find a way back to Europe after studying abroad. I looked up tour companies, au pairing, volunteering, you name it. I never really thought much about teaching until I stumbled across as a blog mentioning a TEFL course in Prague. Something about the way they described this course piqued my interest. I ended up scouring the internet for a good two hours ingesting all the information I could find about Prague and the TEFL course. After reading countless reviews and researching the city of Prague (and the Czech Republic), I just knew. I can’t really explain it any other way than a gut feeling. I had this gut feeling that this was what I was looking for. Everything about it just felt right. I never even considered the possibility of teaching English as a foreign language, but suddenly it seemed so clear. This was my ticket back to Europe. I believe that it was the very next day when I put down my $500 non-refundable deposit to TEFL Worldwide Prague. After finishing the one month course and receiving my certificate, I ended up teaching English in Prague for a total of 14 months. I taught preschoolers and pre-teens (scary right?). At first, I was really excited about teaching. It was new and fresh and I had so much to learn. After I hit the nine month mark, I found myself less and less passionate about teaching. And that’s okay. I knew that teaching was never my number one passion per-se, but it got me back to Europe and it was an experience. And I’m always up for a new challenge! I had a year contract with the preschool I was working for and stuck to it. By the end of the school year, I knew that I needed a change. I could feel myself pulling away from my happiness; it was exactly how I felt before I moved to Prague. I had a good job, but I just didn’t enjoy it. I remember thinking to myself, “If I’m in Prague, but I’m unhappy with what I’m doing, what’s the point?”. I knew that I had to find something else. I’m not the type of person to go through life hating their job…I just can’t be that person. I finished my contract at the end of June and was unemployed for about two months this summer. During that time, I sulked, traveled, cried, and seriously considered moving back home. All my close friends were gone, and without a job, I felt lonely and lost. Thankfully, God clearly had something better in store for me. I found my current job while browsing through a local expats website. The particular company I applied for was a popular online Czech fashion company. They were setting up their English website and needed English proofreaders. I went in for my interview and left basically praying that I got the job. A week later, I got a call that they liked my work and wanted me to start immediately. So from the end of August to late October, I got to work from home on my computer while making much more than I ever made teaching. I was happy. Then in late October, I got a call from my boss offering me a management position. I was over the moon! For about a month and a half now, I’ve been the coordinator/manager for all the English proofreaders. The best part is, I still get to proofread too. With this job, I’m so much happier and so much more at ease. I feel like I’ve finally found something that I love. And to think, I almost booked a flight back to the U.S. this summer. Life has a way of working itself out, and that certainly makes my soul happy. So tell me, what makes yours happy?