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4 days

Written on: Wednesday August 26th, 2009

A journal entry from: Kuala Lumpur

So. Here's the thing. I really don't like change. 

This is pretty inconvenient, as you can imagine, as I find it nearly impossible for me to stay put. And also since I decided to move to the other side of the world for the summer.

For some reason I always forget I don't like change (Brian, however, does not. Whenever I'm like "God, what's wrong with me! I'm a mess!" He's like, "Clara, you're afraid of change" and I'm like "OHHHHHHHYEEAAAAAAH" ). I think this may be because I've gotten pretty good at coping with it. For the past few days, I have really felt myself sort of closing up, getting ready for impact. Going on an adventure or making the most of my last few days is the last thing I want to do. I want to take it easy, sleep a lot, get everything that I have to get done in a calm and also convenient fashion, and then take a midnight flight. 

I've been reading other blogs and I see a lot of "making the most of it" for the last few days, and a very tiny part of me feels guilty for not feeling that instinct. However, I feel like I really have made the most of this internship. I think I gave 100% like 90% of the time (what? a girl's gotta have a break sometimes). Today is a really good example. A coworker who is much older than me, and whose conversations usually involve her trying to get me to go to her church, asked me to lunch. I accepted, very grateful that SOMEONE in the office wanted to take me out to lunch on my last day. I was a little anxious about it being awkward. I think that before this internship, I would have made an excuse not to go. But I went with her, and I really enjoyed the lunch with her. I've really learned the value of having people just be nice, and learned how easy it is just to be really really nice to other people. I'm really touched that she invited me. TEAR.

I also went around to every single person in the office and said goodbye. That was also really awkward. There was a lot of handshaking when I went in for a hug and a lot of hugs when I went in for a handshake, and I had my first conversation with some people in the office while saying goodbye.(Then again, it was really really nice to say goodbye to some people that I've really warmed up to). And again, I'm just really happy that I did that and I don't think I would have done it before this internship, because I would be too afraid about it being awkward. And it was awkward. But that's okay. 

Our latest assignment is to explain what we will be taking back from our host country and the internship. But the idea of writing all that down publicly really makes me anxious. I've written in my private a journal a little about it but...I guess I'm afraid of calling out any changes before they've really had time to settle and become a part of who I am. A part of closing myself up before leaving is giving my psyche sometime to process everything before I go back to the US to "OMFG MALAYSIA OMFG TELL ME EVERYTHINNNNNGGG." 

And really, that in itself is a part of how I have changed. It's a part of an experiment that I'm trying that I like to call "see-what-its-like-to-keep-things-to-myself-instead-of-searching-for-validation-from-other-people-for-every-emotion-i-have." And I'm pretty excited about it! 

Annnnnd I have inadvertently exposed a lot of myself in this blog! Hahaha woops...better luck next time I guess for experiment S.W.I.L.T.K.T.T.M.I.O.S.F.V.F.O.P.F.E.E.I.H. (thats the official abbreviation) 



From Larissa on Aug 26th, 2009

Lady, you crack me up. I so appreciate your candor. I often get platitudes and cliches so when I read something real, I like it. Anyone who says they like change is lying. It is kind of like when people say they like people or they are a people person. Really? I personally can't stand people 99% of the time. Your closing off of your psyche is normal. You are going into defense mode. That is ok. Everyone deals with coming back in a different way. It can get super annoying having people ask you "How was Kuala Lumpur" and expecting a sound bite response. How do you sum up three months of your life on the other side of the world into a sound bite? I try to come up with something pithy and biting that scares people away. I look forward to hearing what you come up with.

From Brian on Aug 28th, 2009

My guess is you won't know what you've brought back until you are re-immersed in the good ol' Western Hemisphere and the differences within yourself are given relief. I think I used that word correctly. Pretty sure. I'd also like to point out that there is an advertisement for Dianetics on the side of the blog. Almost as though it were in response to the difficulties with change. Its great cause its just an erupting volcano with DIANETICS.ORG superimposed. HILARIOUS.