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A Reminder To Myself On My 24th Birthday

A year ago today I was celebrating my 23rd birthday with complete strangers in Bangkok, Thailand. I spent the day visiting Wat Pho temple, exploring the Bangkok canals on a long boat, experiencing my first ever Thai massage, and drinking way too many buckets on Khao San Road.

This year, for my 24th birthday, I am spending the day with my closest friends and then some. I am so so grateful for these wonderful humans in my life, but it is times like these when I look back on what my life was a year ago, backpacking around Southeast Asia, hanging out with elephants and meeting new friends everyday, that I feel the need to give myself a little reminder.

Every so often I feel stuck. With many of my friends graduating and moving on with their lives; getting big kid jobs, travelling, and moving away, I can't help but feel that I'm wasting my time. While I love my job, there's nothing I want more than to be on the road again, living out of a backpack with no plan on where to go next.

What I need to remind myself is that I am exactly where I am supposed to be. Upon returning home from Asia last summer I was overloaded with excitement for my next trip, and that excitement has not dwindled or withered in the slightest. I decided my next trip would be a one way ticket with plans to take my TEFL (Teaching English as a Foreign Language) certification in Costa Rica, coach gymnastics in Australia/ New Zealand, and eventually make my way back to Thailand to intern with Conserve Natural Forests in Pai and hopefully land a gig teaching english. While they are loose plans, they are big, and that scares the crap out of me. I feel like I have so much I want to do and so little time to do it. That I'm wasting my time working and should just get out there. Screw it and just go right?

But this trip is different from the last in that I will have no set return date. Once I go, I will indefinitely be planning my life abroad with no plans or thoughts for when I come home. My life will alter completely for much longer than 3 months, and I need to remind myself that this cannot be a spur of the moment trip. This type of trip requires a decent amount of planning, not to mention money which I currently don't have. It will take time, and until that time comes, I am exactly where I am supposed to be.

As of today I am 24 years old. I am ONLY 24 years old. I have time. I am not stuck. I have wonderful people in my life who support and encourage me. I have my health, my job, and every opportunity to be whatever and whoever I want. So happy birthday me, here's your reminder.

Caylie Smith

Not Your Average

"Whatever is good for your soul, do that"

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