The grass isn't greener on the other side. How can I be happy with what I have?
I've been living abroad for the last few years now, with the last two+ years in Beijing. I'm committed to another year and a half here because of a scholarship program.
Despite all of the good things that I do have in my life, it's hard for me to let go of the feeling that I'm finished with living abroad and ready to start the next part of my life.
Classes do not particularly motivate me, and Chinese-style education, with its general format of teachers talking for two hours and students listening for as long as they can before their eyes glaze over, is not inspiring either. Learning Mandarin, which was my main reason for me to be here, has rather lost its charm as well; my language skills have pretty much hit a plateau.
About two weeks ago, one of our teachers mentioned that we would be leaving as early as September (next term) to do trial teaching, and this was the best news that I had heard in ages. It turned out to be a complete mistake, but since then I've felt rather down, almost cheated of my chance to go home.
One thing that I realize is that perhaps this is a pattern in my life. I used to live in New York, and although it was great and I miss it a lot now, the call of going abroad was strong and it made me unhappy with living in New York as well. At some point in my life, I need to understand that this is what I have and to appreciate it when I have it, not when I'm not there any more. Might as well start this process now.
Things that I have tried (and still do) besides class: swing dancing, gospel choir, taking a photo every day project, trying out new recipes to cook, learning more about Beijing and Chinese history, writing a blog on quirky things in Beijing, etc.
I want to be happier with what I have, and especially, I want to stop complaining. I've seen what this is like in friends who are unhappy with being in China and it's a hard process to watch; I don't want to repeat that!
How can I come to terms with this instead of longing for being somewhere else?
(For further background, this
was a question that I asked previously.)