My contract with my school will finish on May 22 and I will fly back to the States on May 31. I've spent a year and half in Japan and have enjoyed it so much, made wonderful friends and taught incredible students. But the time has come for me to move on.
Coming back to Japan was a dream I had had since I came here as a college student in 2005. By the time I had finished my semester in Chiba, I had fallen in love with Japan and knew that I wanted to come back and teach English someday. It became one of my life goals to accomplish and I worked hard to make it happen.
My experience here the second time around has definitely been much different than my first. I've worked much harder as a full-time English teacher and really challenged myself to perform well at work and contribute to the improvement of my students. I've created wonderful relationships with friends, co-workers and other foreigners. I've seen and done so many new things. I have made a life for myself here. And I am so proud of myself and thankful to my newfound "family" (friends and students) I have here in Japan.
But my next big goal is to go to graduate school and get my master's in photojournalism and I feel like it's time to get the gears in motion. I've come to Japan, it's been incredible, and I survived - now it's time to move on.
I'm going to enjoy my last month here in Japan with lots of parties, hanging out with friends, visiting my favorite restaurants and just soaking up Japan.
Going home is definitely bittersweet.