My take-away from China, and where I am now

I decided to go back to the US after China. I did this for a number of reasons. Anyone following this blog in the coming months will find it a bit all over the place. But let’s just go back to China for a little bit.

While I was there and bored out of my life I spent a lot of time on Reddit, and I encountered a post about red flags for people. One persons answer resonated with me. It was a highly upvoted comment and said something along the lines of “be wary of people who are always talking about things that aren’t there fault. These people don’t have there things together, and there is likely some element of fault in all that happens to them”

Food for thought. Particularly when a few months later I would get a new colleague reporting beneath me. This was despite the fact that she a decade my senior and (supposedly) had more teaching experience than I did. She couldn’t get her life together. She only lasted six months, both coming after me and leaving before me, and in that time she encountered nothing but problems. They were all self-generated problems, but somehow she found a way of blaming everyone but herself. Upon arrival there was a slight miscommunication between work and the realtor meant to show her around, and after seeing one apartment she was dissatisfied with she ignored the advice we gave her and found a place on her own. Later this would bite her in the ass when it turns out the apartment she rented was done so in slightly shady conditions. This of course was not her fault.

The entire time she was here she was always broke, always complaining that it was impossible to save money in China, and yet somehow always at the pub. I didn’t get this, I too was always at the pub and I had saved money hand over fist.

Your mileage will vary I guess.

When she was meant to transfer to another city she was asked if her documents were in order and notarized (China is incredibly unfederalized, and if your documents are good enough for one place in China, they may not be in another), and she said “yes yes of course they are”. Of course they weren’t, and she wasn’t able to transfer to another city. This too wasn’t her fault.

What the hell does this have to do with me?

I used to beleive in luck. That some people are born lucky, that some are not. I had myself firmly planted in the ‘not’ category. I thought myself unlucky. But watching my colleague constantly blame luck, circumstances or anyone else for her shit really reminded me of that reddit post. She wasn’t unlucky, it wasn’t anyone elses fault. She was a stupid person who dodged responisbility. And it made me ask myself whether or not I should be applying the same principles to myself.

This morning I woke up and found an email informing me that my bank card had been cancelled. Three months ago they emailed me to inform me that I would be receiving a new bank card. I don’t recall the email, but I recall deleting numerous emails from my bank. I didn’t activate the new card, and so the old card was terminated. I really need a bank card right now. I am really going to need a bank card in the coming months (i’m still in China as I write this) this is a massive inconvenience. But it isn’t bad luck. Not by a long shot. I could have read my emails. I could have recieved that card in the mail. I could have had it sent to me. I could have dealt with this problem months ago. But I didn’t, because I didn’t have my shit together.

My phone recently bricked. I knew it was coming. It was acting increasingly buggy. It was old as fuck (phone years are even worse than dog years), and I was threatening to buy a new one for some time. But I didn’t, because I am a fucking idiot. So, now I found myself without a phone and my hand was forced into buying a new one.

I am not doing a stellar job of being an adult. And I am not coming to terms with that fact that it isn’t circumstances that were to blame, but my own damn self.

So I am going back to DC to figure shit out. I think it is the best thing for me to do. I don’t think I will be there forever, and I am hoping right now that I will not. But it is something I need to do.

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