The Return to Blogging

So I’ve been absent from the blog for awhile. I’ve actually had a few posts ready to submit, but I just haven’t. It’s always difficult, because I am such a private person, and sometimes struggle with the idea of posting everything on social media. But then I remember I love blogging and instagram and just want to live my life and the haters gonna hate hate hate hate hate. I’ve also been busy trying to get my shit together (excuse my french), which hasn’t exactly happened but I think things are falling into place kind of, maybe. I’m currently back in Cincinnati, OH, for the first time in 6 years! It’s crazy being home, because nothing has really changed, except I’m 24 now and could use a bigger selection of young, single men here, not the suburban dads; but the suburban moms like to drink wine so we get along fine.

The last really hip passport picture I got to take on my travels home in August

The last really hip passport picture I got to take on my travels home in August

Anyways, after spending the summer in England, I returned to the USA on a high from traveling, making international friends, a crazy summer in England, and a plane ticket back to Madrid already booked. Well, home was a wake up call, and I panicked and decided I wanted to apply to grad school while my MCAT scores were still valid (I CAN’T TAKE THAT AWFUL, LIFE RUINING TEST AGAIN), so on September 22, the day my flight was scheduled to go to Madrid, I got my wisdom teeth out. If that doesn’t explain reality coming crashing down and slapping you in the face and making your cheeks really swollen, I’m not exactly sure what does. 

North Devon, England...Where I lived this summer!

North Devon, England…Where I lived this summer!

So my life right now consists of figuring it out….whatever that it may be. But in the mean time, I am still really focused on travel and health/wellness, so that’s definitely the direction my life and this blog is going to take!

So you would believe the previous picture was actually England...there were some telephone booths nearby.

So you would believe the previous picture was actually England…there were some telephone booths nearby.

Now, I might take the plunge and try to self host…..so I’ll probably not post again until I figure that out….which probably will be in 2015. 

It’s Okay.

I haven’t updated for awhile because I haven’t been motivated to write and it always takes me a few weeks of readjustment when I travel for a long period to/from Europe (it was like culture shock part 2 for me! . I could do travel recaps (I still need to do my WHOLE eurotrip, Madrid, and Paris the second time around), but I just haven’t been in the mood, as I feel like my mind has been somewhere else 90% of the time since I returned to Spain from the USA. I’ve always had a wandering mind….I day dream a lot and “zone out” all the time. Sometimes when I’m daydreaming, I get an fixated on idea, which quickly becomes a new goal and incorporated into my life. I remember last year, all I could think about was backpacking Europe and living in Spain. Before I entered my freshman year of college at Ohio State, I got the opportunity to participate in the Leadership Collaborative with 80 other incoming freshman. It was a great experience which really motivated me to get involved and make the most of my college experience prior to beginning. At the Leadership Collaborate, we did the Strengths Quest. I will never forget that one of my top 5 strengths was futuristic. 

But the more I think about it, I’m not sure futuristic is a strength. Yes, when I do things, I tend to see the “whole picture” and how it will effect the future, however it leads me to spending hours thinking about the future instead of living in the moment. It also leads me to question what I am doing. I don’t have a degree in education and don’t want to be a teacher (it’s a lot harder than it looks!). I think one thing that high school and college ingrained in me was a sense of being on a “timeline”. In college, when you are a freshman, you meet with your advisor and plan out your timeline of classes FOR THE REST OF YOUR COLLEGE CAREER. Knowing what I was doing always gave me a false sense of security. There was always the question of “what are you doing after you graduate?”, but other than that, for five years I always had a clear sense of what I was doing, why I was doing it, and what came next. Post grad life is different. It’s the first time in your life you aren’t all following that same path. You can’t compare yourself to what you see everyone else doing, because you all have different end goals. And you most definitely cannot put yourself on a timeline. If life was meant to be a rigid timeline, it would be called plan

If there’s one thing living in Spain thus far has taught me, it is that it’s okay. It’s okay to question what you are doing. It’s okay to not have everything figured out right now. And most importantly, it’s okay to live completely in the moment.

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What lead me to the Auxiliar de Conversacion Program in Spain

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Lately, I’ve had a huge internal struggle with if I should be doing this program. To be honest, most of my question is coming from the complete unsupportive and judgmental opinion of my parents. In the past few months, I’ve heard everything from me being selfish for doing this program to them saying they will never speak to me again if I do. While that is a hard pill to swallow, something is still telling me I have to go. Somehow, this program found me and if I don’t take this opportunity, I know I will regret it the rest of my life. It all began the day I decided I wasn’t going to apply to medical school. I remember crying on the phone to my dad, because I just was so confused. I walked into the union at my college campus, a half hour early for my student organization meeting. I decided to get on my computer and look at other post-grad options. The first thing I typed into the google search was “post grad travel options”. After spending only 30 minutes on google reading about people who got their TEFL certification and have been teaching abroad, I quickly decided that would be my next step. I began dreaming of teaching in Europe and having a life abroad after graduation. It was all I could think about….

The next day, I was at lunch with my friend and I excitedly told her that I had figured out what I wanted to do after graduation. I told her I was still looking in to ways to make it happen, but I wanted to move abroad. To my surprise, she didn’t think it was crazy and knew a friend who moved to Spain. She gave me his contact information and that is when I learned about the Auxiliar De Conversacion (North American Culture & Language Assistant Program) and the rest is history!

The tough part for me has been explaining to others that people change, dreams change and life doesn’t follow a direct path. All through college, it was about medical school. But when I finally let myself really think about post grad life, I realized there was a whole world out there, billions of people with different culture, perspectives and experiences to grow from and learn about! While I am not working an entry level job in the United States, or going to medical school, I believe I am making an educated decision in making myself a more cultured individual. Some may call it irresponsible, immature or foolish, but they can think what they want. Only the truly ignorant would not see the opportunities, self discovery and growth that this program has the potential to be. 

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Have you ever done something your family doesn’t approve of? Have you ever changed career paths? 

The Adventure Begins!

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So I’m doing the cliche first post about myself. I’m Kaitlyn and a 23 year old recent college graduate. Before my senior year of college, I realized there was more to life than studying organic chemistry,  preparing for the MCAT and going to medical school. When it came time to submit my primary application, there was something holding me back from pushing the submit button, and that’s when I knew I had to stop dreaming and start living. I didn’t want to live with regrets and what ifs anymore. So I began planning my first eurotrip and also began looking into other options for traveling post college.

One year later, everything has changed. A year ago, I would have never thought that I would have actually backpacked Europe for a month and I definitely wouldn’t believe that I was preparing to move to Spain in the end of September…BUT I AM! Until I move to Spain, I plan on doing recap posts from my Eurotrip, posts about my job and getting ready to live abroad and connect with other wanderlust struck travelers! So here I am, a twenty-something girl getting ready for my next adventure and excited to share my travel adventures and everything that comes with it on this blog!