The last time I was in Thailand in 2014, we had a 2 night stop in the big city of Bangkok. It was near the end of the trip and i was sick (something I'm quite good at while traveling) and I gave myself permission to spend an entire day walking through the mega malls and seeing Interstellar at the super posh movie theatre. A totally unexotic and unproductive day. It felt right and it felt good.
Now I'm a month away from going back to the USA, where I get to start my life over from scratch, and I'm feeling the familiar pangs of anxiety start to set in. All of the sudden I've regressed into a state of mind where sitting with books and aimlessly walking have become a waste of time due to their lack of results. It's as though someone will judge me when I'm questioned "What did you do?" at the end of the day. But it's only me, I'm the only critic.
Being gone for 5 months is a vacation, no matter how I spin it. Sure, there were challenges and I did do some work, but in general I've had no responsibilities and have had total control over how my days will look. Now that I need to figure out what to do when I get home (and where home will be), I've started putting the pressure on myself to prove that this time hasn't been all luxury and relaxation. My inner critic is a relentlessly harsh tyrant.
So, here's to a little more kindness, patience and acceptance. Here's to being grateful for what I've done (and haven't done) and being convinced that I deserved every moment of it. Here's to saying I can live the good life and not owe anyone for it.
I am going to sit here in this cafe in the park and read some Jack Kerouac. Then I will go to the dentist, and after that I have no idea what will happen. Whatever it is, it's perfectly alright.