Living and working internationally is a bit like an extended holiday. You go to one place unpack for a while, book some tours, explore and reach out to others who are there with you.
Sometimes you find yourself meeting new people who are very different from you or those whom with you have a lot in common. You chat with them at the pool, on a tour or may even sit with them at dinner. Before you know it you are spending time together and enjoying their company. At the end of the holiday you exchange emails, add them to your Facebook, Instagram or Twitter and you have expanded your network. You may never cross paths with them again or you may stay acquaintances or become long distance friends.
This is similar to what it is like to work and live abroad. You arrive at a school, settle in and begin to establish relationships with those around you. Some relationships are more formal and some individuals become very close and personal friends.
When you work internationally you are fortunate to be surrounded by individuals that often share the same beliefs, values, experiences and more importantly sense of adventure. For me these individuals have become my family in China. They look out for me, support me, care for me, encourage me and accept me.
At the end of this year many of them will be leaving CISB and going in different directions: Southern China, Korea, Poland, Abu Dhabi, and Canada. Some will meet up with old friends and become colleagues again and some are going into new and unfamiliar environments without a support system.
What I know about these individuals is that they are brave, adventurous, open minded and want the most that life has to offer. They are globally minded and passionate educators that model their love of life long learning. They immerse themselves in the culture, language and experiences of their host country. They are resilient, curious and make an impact on children all around the world.
I admire these individuals for choosing their own path and living a life with purpose without regret. Thank you for being passengers on my journey and for positively impacting my life. I will miss you all!