Monday, August 22, 2011

18 Days and Counting

Okay, really, seventeen days if you don't count today, but it's still really weird to think about. It's kind of bittersweet. I'm so excited, but I feel like I've wasted a lot of time. Not just lately, but generally, over the years, I've wasted a lot of time.

I realized how "not" close I am to my family and friends. I didn't realize there were so many emotional barriers between myself and the others around me. While some of it is me specifically, I never realized how hard it is to communicate with the ones you care about on a daily basis. How much gets misconstrued when you speak? It makes me want to go up to everyone I've ever met and give them a hug. I just want to tell everyone, "Thank you for putting up with me. I sincerely care about you and wish the best for you. Please stay by my side as I grow as a person. I love you." But if you actually say that, it sounds fake. It sounds plastic. (Reading it is even worse.)

I was trying to clean out my room at my house today and realized how in-and-out of home I have been for the past year and a half. I feel like my feet aren't grounded anywhere, and I wonder if this is part of why I was so anxious to get away. I have a loving family, fantastic friends, and a boyfriend that I care about deeply, but I still wanted to do this. Is it right? Sometimes I wonder if people think I'm being selfish. I know that I'm doing this for myself and that I'm happy with it. Yet I can't help but feel that there is a little regret somewhere inside of me, and I'm scared. Then again, this is part of growing up, and I'm going through what some college kids go through when they move to a different school. I'm just going to another country. I guess it's normal to just question yourself when you're making a big decision. I know this is good for me. I've been so headstrong throughout the entire process, the good and the bad, that I haven't stopped to think of the consequences. Better to face them now than when I arrive in Japan, I suppose.

In all this questioning, I have often wondered what I was going to do in my future. I want to teach Japanese Literature, or at least pursue that as my major field in my academic career. But I also love manga. I think it's lame to say it, but I'm thinking about writing my thesis on manga. If I learn Japanese, I can focus on a linguistic approach. I can think about the differences in translation and the difficulty of translating a language perfectly. in my relationship with a native Japanese speaker who speaks English as a second language, I've realized that when we communicate that certain words have different weights. A word that might sound light or natural in Japanese may sound heavy when translated into English and vice versa.

Sometimes I wonder if English Literature is right for me, but I want to do so many things. I want to focus on linguistics, psychology, and Japanese, in particular. I figured and English Literature would be a good start because it would give me a basis on which to write a thesis for Japanese literature. Anyway, I guess this is getting a bit weird and off topic.

I knew that if I started a blog I would start to ramble, but these are the things you start to think about when you go to study abroad.

I still don't have an apartment as of yet, and that's a little unsettling, but that should work out soon. I'm just going to try to enjoy the rest of my time at home before I leave. A lot has to get done, and I haven't even come close to starting to pack. (Although I get rather excited about packing, so that shouldn't be a problem when I start.)

As for now, that's it. Until next time!



  1. Hi, macy!
    I'm Fritz; I'm currently an exchange student in Rits (I arrived here last April) I was surfing the web in hopes of finding students who will be coming this September. I'm staying at I-house1. If you have any questions, I'll be happy to help. See you soon!

  2. Hi, Fritz! Thank you for reading my blog, and for being the first person to comment! How are you liking Ritsumeikan so far? I'm a little nervous because I leave in about a week, and I'm very worried about the oral exam and entrance exam. (Yikes!) But I'm excited about meeting the other exchange students and making new friends! I hope we can see each other on campus sometime!

  3. Rits (and Kyoto in general) is just awesome. I'm sure you'll love it too.
    And don't worry too much about the placement test, it seems that you've been studying Japanese for a long time? So you'll be fine.

    See you soon! :)