Why I Quit My Life to Move Abroad

Why I Quit My Life to Move Abroad

I seem to have a hard time staying put.

I’m twenty-five, or I will be in a little less than two months. So far, I’ve lived in Tennessee, Wisconsin, Ohio, England (only for five months BUT I’M COUNTING IT), and four different towns/cities in Pennsylvania. Most recently, Pittsburgh. When I graduated from Pitt, I swore I was staying put. I was going to put down roots. I was going to….what was it? Oh yeah. Adult. I was going to adult so hard.

I got a job. I got an apartment. And most importantly…I got a couch.


{happiness is a velvet couch. except it’s not. I guess that’s kind of the point.}

I built up a perfectly palatable life for myself. I hosted a lot of brunches. And talked about learning to bake bread. I decorated my 500 square foot apartment with a fiendish glee bordering on mania (I called it ‘stress nesting’). I spent a good amount of time staring at the GRE guide on the bottom of the book stacks and thinking about getting a masters degree in something practical. I carefully curated my life into something I felt it was supposed to be. And honestly, I was pretty miserable.

It might’ve taken my friends and family a bit by surprise when I sold most of my belongings — including my beloved couch — and announced that I was quitting my job and moving to Thailand to teach English. In fact, I rather took myself by surprise a couple months later when it dawned on me that I really had sold all my stuff and bought a one way ticket to Bangkok. As a friend told me, “It can be startling, realizing how much power we actually have over our own lives.”

Um. Yeah.


{packing for a move: my natural state}

I have long joked about embracing my inner nomad. That it was as inevitable as me making obnoxious and occasionally obscure film references…That it was just like this moment in Juliette Binoche’s brilliant turn-of-the-millenium film Chocolat:

“But still the clever north wind was not satisfied. It spoke to Vianne of towns yet to be visited, friends in need yet to be discovered, battles yet to be fought…”

Of course, that quote ends with Vianne throwing her nomad mother’s ashes to the wind and deciding to stay put in her little provincial town with Johnny Depp as a door-fixing bff. So, rather a poor choice for me here. But not the point.


{ok, V made a solid choice. hi johnny of the early aughts!}

Still…I’m sticking by my annoying reference. My own clever north wind is calling. I’m ready for my next adventure. For new towns, new battles…(new brunches??)

Time for me to go and nomad.

Nomad Chloë is go.

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