Long time, no post. Hopefully many of you are on my Facebook or at least subscribed to my Youtube. As many of you know by now I have a daughter (Lily) who is currently 8 months old. She is everything I could have ever asked for in a child. Many ask me about her father and all I can answer is that he is Korean and somewhere in Korea. So yes, I am a single parent now, but that should not ever be considered a negative. I’m happy that I have her. The challenging part is returning to Korea with her.
I have interviewed with some recruiting companies and can only pray that they find a place that would be okay with me having a child. It’s so sad that they view a child as a negative due to illnesses that can occur with you missing days of work. I can understand that, but many teachers are female in Korea and they have children. One of my previous co-teacher would leave early some days because her daughter became sick. Yet she did not leave during teaching hours. She left when it was her office hours to take her to the doctor . Sometimes she even waited until the end of the day because she was swamped in work. Yes, she was married and sometimes her husband couldn’t pick her up. Even when I feel sick I go to work. I always did for school too, except twice. Once for chickenpox and once for mold poisoning (my bro got it too). I’m not one to miss days because I feel like I’m letting someone down. I would try my best to find someone to get her for me. I have a wonderful network of friends/parent/students who I’m sure would do their best to assist when necessary (many have already expressed this).
Now I think things will be a tad better/easier once the last of my paperwork is complete. The CRC returning and apostilles are left to do. Sadly the FBI told me they were about a month from my submission date. On a positive note Lily’s passport should be here around the same time.
There is one thing I wish I would have done differently when I found out I was pregnant while in Korea and that is to have asked foreigners for advice. If I would have I believe I would have finished my contract and had a healthier pregnancy than I did due to all the walking. Even though a mistake was made in not completing my contract I can’t let it hinder my return. I won’t focus on the past any longer and what I coulda, shoulda, or woulda done. I’m charging forward.
So now what can I do? The best thing I could ever do.
I put it all in God’s capable hands because I can do nothing on my own. And boy has there been a wonderful peace in my heart since I gave it all to him. I just have to trust in him.
So yesterday I said my goodbyes to my church people. It was very surreal and I felt like I was in the twilight zone. I was zoning out the whole time trying to make sure I didn’t cry. I knew I would miss them all so much, but I don’t like crying in front of people. There was another member who is also leaving and headed to Japan to have her second child. Her husband is in the military and will be deployed so she chose to go back home to have the baby around her family. I think that is an absolute wonderful thing and I will probably do the same or pay for my mom to be with me wherever I am.
The best news I got so far was the email last night with my FedEx Tracking number telling me when my contract would arrive. I immediately checked it and it said that it is set to arrive at my parents house around 10:30 am on Tuesday. I am so excited and have planned my whole day around that. Since I have still yet to sell my car I informed my dad that I will need the money to get my visa done among some other things. He said that he will try to get my sisters car fixed so that I can sell my car on Tuesday and run my other errands. I really hope that it happens because it’s rough still having to do shopping and having no money to do it. I love helping my family, but this is a huge stress on me. I’ll just keep praying and hoping that everything happens with enough time to relax with friends before I go.
I also decided that I will get a sew-in done. It will be kind of long…I had a sew-in done before and everyone really liked it. I had LOVED it, but as I’m not really one for wearing fake anything and I sort of have issues with hair touching me it was a challenge. I had to get used to the length and feel. I did it again and liked it for a month and then wanted to get rid of it. I realized it was because I asked for the part in my hair to be in the wrong place. A hair part is an important part of any style and I’m very particular about my hair part. hahah The first time I had it for almost 3 months and watched it two or three times. The second time I had it for less than two months and took it out faster than lightning. My natural hair is not bad and that’s not why I am choosing to go this route. I’m choosing a sew-in because I want to make my days easier. I want to be able to just get up and go. I will probably buy a bun roll thing so in between hair changes no one would really be able to tell. HAHAH, not that I really care, but I know students my freak out seeing hair go from long to short and then back to long.
I asked my coordinator about leaving early and they said that we have to give them our flight details and let them know if we will still be using the shuttle buses. I think it’s strange to tell them when I am going because it is really early, but I guess they want to keep track of the people. They also informed me that the first pickup time has changed from 11 am to Noon. I really do appreciate my coordinator. They keep me up to date and I have been in discussions with many people and they have done nothing but complained about theirs. I think it is sad because the coordinators work break their backs to get the stuff done for people and to keep them updated. They have to answer all those ridiculous questions on the multiple social media pages and in the emails. I know it drives them crazy to continually repeat themselves because it drives me nuts to see people asking the same questions again and again too. No matter how many times they ask people to use the search function they do not. Please Please Please, If you want to apply for Fall term search the page before you ask. I don’t mean just look at the first 10 questions. Use your CTRL + F (find) option and search for hours before you ask. I did a ton of research beforehand and I’m so grateful I did. *** I did not originally intend on writing this much in this section haha ****
Anyway I am more than ready for this adventure and as it gets closer my relationships with some of my Korean friends gets more and more interesting, but that story is for my other blog page.
What a terribly long journey this has been! I definitely suggest that if you apply or EPIK you get it over with early (applications for Fall term are being accepted starting Feb 1st). You won’t be able to truly relax until you get your placement, but if you already have all your ducks in a row before they even start placing it will make you feel MUCH better.
So my coordinator received my documents yesterday (Tuesday for them) and told me that I never sent her a confirmation email about my address and phone number. I looked back at the email I was originally sent with the placement and realized that email was sitting in my draft folder! I am so glad that I had documents still left otherwise I could have been waiting even longer for my NOA/Contract. My coordinator is really an absolutely amazing person. She has been so wonderful to me this whole time and I am always nervous with dealing with higher up people because well, no one is perfect, though I try my best to be. lol
Anyway, within these back and forth emails we had yesterday, she told me that they are trying to get the contracts out by the end of this week! I am really hoping they make that goal as I am already planning to now leave on January 24th. Many people have asked me about my visa and how I will get it in time, but I have a secret. Teehee, there is a Korean Consulate only about 30 minutes from me and they don’t get as much business so they can do things more quickly. I was told by a Korean friend that sometimes they will process them the same day. All I know is that the time is supposedly shorter than going through the Houston office and for that I am excited.
All of this news has caused me to become quite emotional. I will be leaving my sister and her kids at a crucial time.She is dealing with some parental rights things and I have been helping her to stay calm. I told her that I wouldn’t be able to help even if I was here because that’s not my area of expertise (although I could make it my area). To know I won’t see my nieces and nephew for at least 4-6 months absolutely kills my heart. I really hope that they do get to come in the summer or I will be really sad at that time. This week, once my car is sold, I will be going to help with the passport process. I am excited for all of our futures, but more nervous for them. I just want to be able to help contribute towards their future.
Next week I should FINALLY, have a new video up since I will be leaving.
Can’t believe this is really happening. I feel that I am in a dream state and I will wake up at any moment. I am just happy that I will get a couple of weeks in Seoul to see many of my friends before they return to the states or they head off to other countries to study.
Today I had sent off the last of my paperwork to Korea. It was my notarized diploma with the apostille (I drove to Austin, 3 hours away to get it) and I had to send my final transcript as well. It cost me $44 and should arrive before the end of next week. I am still waiting on my placement email, but I am trying to stay busy by reading and studying Korean. I am a relatively patient person, but the waiting with everything does tire one out. I am SO very happy to have those documents in the mail though and I can’t wait to see when they have arrived.
So there are so many questions that continue to pop up on the EPIK page. A little while back there was one about cell phones and what people would do with them. I found this nice little article on phones and I think I will probably just rent an EGG because I have several phone programs on my phone that work via WiFi and that would hold me over until I bought the new Samsung Galaxy phone that’s coming out! BOY AM I EXCITED ABOUT THAT! Yes I will be buying the Korean version because I hope to be there for more than two years.
So I have known a Korean lady and her mother for about a year or so. They have a hair shop by my parents house and I went in there last week to buy a belt (they have really cute cheap belts). I was telling her about the timeline of documents and how I was worried about how long it may take to get my visa with going to Houston and all. Then she let me know that there is a Korean Embassy office in Dallas not too far from me. They do both visa’s and passports there. She even called them and made sure they could do it for Americans going to Korea. She gave me all the information and told me that sometimes they will do the visa that day and that it just really depends on how many people are in there. HOW EXCITING IS THAT!!?!
My other good news is that I get to pick up my diploma on January 6th ^-^
My older sister said that she wanted to do something really nice for me as a graduation gift and she said that she is going to give me money. I don’t know how much we are talking, but my dad told her about the other test I am going to take in LA and everything else, so I am hoping it is at least $500 because then I don’t have to sell my car right away and I could get all of my stuff done without worrying about someone driving me. I would also be able to do all of the shopping which would allow me to completely pack. I’m going to be hopeful and keep my fingers and toes crossed.
My living room is almost completely packed, and my bedroom still looks scary. Cleaned out the car adn just need to wipe down the inside panels. Things are getting more real as the new year creeps up.
I titled this the first email because I am waiting on another one. Today I was told by my coordinator that my package was received and processed. I was also informed that it will be about 2-3 weeks from this point before I hear back anything.
I’m super excited now, but I’m really hoping that it is closer to 2 weeks and that I can get the visa paperwork taken care of before my 20 hour certification in LA. If need be I could stay extra days in LA or take the test the following weekend in SF, but I’m hoping that won’t be the case.
WoW, I’m just really excited and I feel like a huge weight has been lifted off of my back. No the full weight isn’t gone, but it’s a great feeling. Can’t wait until it’s a decent time to be able to tell my parents. They have been so helpful and supportive along the way, I make sure to keep them in the loop.
I still have to send in two documents though: My notorized and apostilled diploma and my transcript showing that my degree has been conferred. I was hoping to send that stuff in Korea to save money, but we will see what happens in the next few weeks.