What I Learned: A Year in Korea

Removing myself from everything I built, always knew, and defined myself as, to live abroad, doing something I’ve never done, taught me a few things that has made me more grounded than I’ve ever been.

They are things that I really wish everyone gets a chance to realize in this lifetime. Because life is too short, and too long.


1. I learned how much of a life you can build in just a year. That you can start over, anywhere, anytime.

I started in a place where I could never remember how to get back to my apartment after going out to eat–to exploring new cities all by myself. I started at the bottom of a dance academy where no one knew me–to walking through the door with warm welcomes, cheers if  I am starting a new class, or worries if I have been out sick. I started in a school where everyone kept calling me by the name of the previous teacher–to kids spoiling me with gifts and letters, in tears because I am leaving, and teachers showering me with adoration and praises, always saying “of course, because it’s Nakita.” 

2. I learned that you can change your entire life in any way you’d like.

That you can achieve the dreams you’ve always dreamed, if you put a time limit on thinking, and an execution on doing. Because you are you, no matter where you go. In my darkest years, I would’ve never imagined this year that I have lived. The childhood me always wanted to live in Korea, make friends in Korea, train in dance in Korea, and perform in Korea. And I can’t believe I can say: that’s what I did.

3. But I also learned, your demons will always follow you no matter how far you go.

Only until you learn to embrace them, pay them some loving and compassionate attention, and heal them.

4. I learned that you can find love where ever you are.

That kindness, appreciation, gratitude, and authenticity are universal no matter what language you speak. If you have the courage to show your heart, people will surely see it.

5. I learned that if you never find the courage to lose sight of the shore, you will never know what’s in stored for you.

Because how do you know if you never tried? The opportunities I have said yes to, have led me to opportunities I have never even imagined. And it’s the best thing that has happened to me–every time.


The comfort of a stable, simple, and consistent life is certainly a valid one. But this was for the ones who stay awake at night, wondering if there’s more.

Because yes, there is. 


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