Travel and family, both

[Note: Thank Alisha and the man from Korea for inspiring some of this.]

I’m only 23. If I walk away from teaching abroad right now, I can still have both. I can still have the travel I’ve had already plus the family in the future.

My parents moved to Kentucky when I was three years old. We lived in an apartment for three and half years before buying a house. We stayed in that house for seven years or so, I think, adding a couple family members to the bunch along the way. Then we moved into a different, bigger house on the other side of town.

My next-door neighbor starting teaching abroad years ago. He’s been in Saudi Arabia for 12 years. He’s 61 this year, which means it just got harder for him to get a visa to work in the Kingdom. He said he’ll teach in Vietnam or something when he can’t work here anymore. “What am I supposed to do,” he says, “retire?”

As far as I can tell, neither my parents nor my next-door neighbor regret the choices they made. If I were them, I’m not sure I would either. But where I am now, I still want to have both. And right now, when I’m 23, 24, maybe 25, I can still have both.

But the longer I go down this road, the harder it will be to have both.