As a single and a celibate and an unlikely to be married anytime soon 20-something, there’s a lot of things I can’t do. I can’t keep a special someone warm on a cold night, I can’t head down the street to a café on a Saturday morning with her just to sit and enjoy the start of another day. I can’t have someone who is the most important person in my life and I in theirs.
Yet, singleness also means there are some things I can do that would be considerably more difficult if I had someone else. However, I spend a lot more time thinking about what might have been than what can be. Part of the reason for this has been the intangibility of the ‘can be’.
But recently this has changed. One of the things that would be considerably more difficult with a partner or children is deciding to pack up my bags and head to Asia to teach English.
It’s almost liberating. Here is something that I can do better and easier because there’s just me. No wife to quit her job. No kid to take away from security and comfort.
Will I do it?
The thought is lingering though.
There’s a chance that my school will need a few people to take redundancies at the end of the year. It seems almost perfect; volunteer to leave and get paid to go do it. More realistically, I still feel I need another couple of years to improve my teaching here and then I would be a better teacher overseas as well. If I stay at this school for another five years, I’ll be able to get long service leave, which would mean I could go overseas for six months at half pay and if I liked it I could just quit and go on. It would also mean my house would be paid off and I’d have some money in the bank, so I wouldn’t have any need to make a lot of money.
Then today at church there was a guy visiting from Indonesia. He works at a medical clinic in a town that happens to have a school that is always looking for trained teacher volunteers. He was saying I should consider the school. It feels a lot more possible and exciting when you can google an actual organisation and airport.
In all honesty, I don’t think I’ll be there or anywhere else in the next couple of years.
It does me good, though, to look towards something like that with hope and know that it is even more possible because of this single life.