Only two days left (as I type) and I’m moving to Tulungagung (Friday the 15th!). I’m excited, a little nervous, ready to get to work, and also anticipating a long first three months at site. Yesterday I had my final interview and I found myself really happy with PST, overall. I feel prepared to go live at site and teach for the next two years. I’ve definitely grown since I arrived here. I can handle attention better (although I still don’t understand comments about how beautiful my nose is), my language skills have skyrocketed thanks to the awesome teachers here, and best of all, I’ve become really comfortable living here in an Indonesian home.
Comfort is a double-edged sword. I’m proud of the fact I feel like I fit in here, at least as much as I can with cultural differences, and that has been a huge accomplishment. But when you get too comfortable somewhere, it’s hard to challenge yourself, it’s hard to grow. A huge part of why I chose to do Peace Corps was because I wanted to be uncomfortable. I wanted the personal growth that comes with pushing my boundaries and trying new things. I wanted to learn to adapt in a new situation. I want to work through some of my weaknesses and become stronger.
All that to say, I was talking to a fellow volunteer the other day and I was lamenting the fact that I am about to move out of my newfound comfort zone in Batu and I will have to start over with a new family, new school, thousands of introductions and millions of photographs. And then I caught myself and I remembered why I came here. Being uncomfortable may not be fun, but it will be worth it. And hopefully the most uncomfortable part won’t last long, as I have the language skills to be able to adapt more quickly than I did when I arrived in Batu. By the time I get to IST (in service training) in October, I sure hope Tulungagung will feel like the home that Batu feels like now.
With that in mind, I think I’m ready to go! Wish me luck and once I’m settled and have internet access I will be updating again! J