It seems like a silly thing to say I’m learning how to be uneducated but that’s truly what it feels like. Maybe it’s better to say ‘I’m coming to terms with being clueless’ or ‘I have to accept the fact that I know nothing’, but however I say it, it all boils down to how hard it is for me to accept how little I know.
When I say I feel uneducated I am referring to more than just the obvious things I don’t know about all the places I’m travelling. Absolutely its difficult to be in a foreign country and have little to no concept of the currency, language and culture but those are things that I can Google or read about in books or use an app to figure out. What I find much more difficult is accepting that I am uneducated about the every day things in the cities I am in. It’s quite the experience to have no clue what mode of transportation is best to take; no idea how much things should cost; no concept of whether the street vendor food is safe to eat; no idea what clothing is appropriate to wear; or no clue how to verbally express gratitude to a local who helps us out. It really bothers me that I don’t know anything about these daily things. I find myself mulling over ‘game plans’ in my head about where we will go for supper before we’ve even had breakfast or pre planning a conversation I will have with the receptionist at the hostel about how much Thai pants should cost. I’d much rather be totally immersed in the present moment than focused on how anxious and embarrassed I feel about how little I know. Zac says he’s totally fine with feeling like an idiot and I am a bit jealous of that. He has no problem asking someone to repeat themselves if he doesn’t understand what they said or asking people for information on something. I want to be at ease with admitting that despite all the knowledge I have, I really don’t know anything and it is 100% okay. Since I’m not okay with it yet, I have to learn how to be okay with it. The good thing is, I am eager to learn and I am eager to push myself to accept that it is okay to not have all the information and facts and it’s okay to be clueless. The next six months will present me with many opportunities to learn and everyday I will be able to accept being uneducated and lose the negative feelings I get from not knowing things. Tomorrow we are going to watch the sunrise over Angkor Wat. What an amazing opportunity for me to recognize that it’s okay that there are many unknowns to the day and just enjoy the incredible view. With time I will be able to appreciate what a gift it is to know so little and what an even greater gift it is to have daily opportunities to learn so much.