From Korea with Love

Sometimes stepping away is ok.

Sometimes when you step away, you go through a profound change.

But, sometimes you don’t even notice it.

Sometimes others do.

Late last year, I went to Seoul for eight days to visit my brother. This was only the second time I had been away from my husband and kids for more than three or four days. Just to make it a little more interesting, I left on the exact day that North Korea decided to shell a small island in South Korea and everyone was on high alert. The timing couldn’t have been more perfect.

Have fun, don't crash in that airplane and bring us back something.

While there, I had a lot of time to spend alone. I wandered the city and got lost “into” (as opposed to in) it. My Korean is…well, it just isn’t, but I managed. Actually, being isolated is one of things I enjoy most about traveling.

If you know me at all, you know that what I enjoy most in life is exploring. Other cultures, other places, other foods. Just put “other” in front of it and I will like it. I am borderline obsessive about “other.” But, this is something you can’t do a lot of when you have young kids. So…

I just explored, on my own.

I ate this.

That is some steaming soup ya'll. Slurp.

I didn’t eat this.

Nope, didn't eat those.

I love fish markets. I found this one and spent hours just watching the goings and comings.

I was all clammed up.

I drank a lot of this.

There was a couple that was all lovey, dovey next to me. I stared at them with no shame.

For eight days, I explored and didn’t talk to my family once. Not once. For someone like me, that’s a long time. I missed them, but I learned that I like to be with myself and by myself.

I sent this picture to my husband and kids while I was there.

Me with a palace behind me. Really touristy and really cold. I look completely the same to me.

When he saw it, my 7YO son said to my husband, “Daddy, Mommy looks different.” I was different. He saw something, something that I couldn’t see, but that I felt. This “something” is what I want to share with them throughout my entire lifetime. Relentlessly.

Sometimes you can lose yourself in the process of caring for others. Get lost in the day-to-day and forget the things that inspire you. Sometimes when you step away, you find them again. And when you find them, you can share them joyfully.


3 Comments on “From Korea with Love”

  1. danael says:

    This blog post impacted me…so much that I read it twice.

    When I try to think of the words to say…all that comes to mind is I get it. I understand completely.


  2. Michael says:

    Beautiful and sublime.

  3. Danael and Michael – I am glad you both enjoyed it. To get lost within or despite yourself can be a painful experience. But finding ‘you’ again is joyful.

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