Finding Mocha: 5 Years Ago

All my life I’ve heard about the 5 year plan. It helps to keep you focused on your goals and to work towards what you want in life. I’ve never had a 5 year plan, and I probably never will. Although in retrospect I have a lot to say about 5 year increments. I looked at the calendar the other day and realized it has been 5 years since my life change was finalized. Looking back the week leading up to that finalization was one of the longest weeks of my life and all I wanted was for everything to end so I could start over. Read More

Mocha Diaries: The Clouds Are Lifting

It has been a while now since the clouds have been lifting out of my life. That’s my little metaphor for my depression and anxiety issues at hand. Since I turned 30 I have been on a slow but steady incline toward a more sound mind. I’m not sure what exactly triggered it, but I’m thankful that my mind is more peaceful than it has been in a decade or two. Read More

Mocha Diaries: The Solo Christmas

This year I had a lot of apprehension about what to do for Christmas. I’m told I must spend it with others and not alone. I entertained the idea and then thought to myself will me hanging out with others make this a more joyous day?

The resounding answer in my head was a ‘No.’ Now that I have lived overseas through 4 Christmases I’ve come to notice a few things. Every family eats different food, which means in 4 years unless I make a pie thats the only food that resembles Christmas that shows up on my plate. I deal with it and say it is what it is. Christmas isn’t about the food its about the company.  Read More

Mocha Diaries: The Intervention

About a month or so ago I had an “intervention” of sorts. I met a friend of a friend, who has now become my friend. And she intervened in my life, by talking to me about myself. In many ways it came out casually as talking about other things and then it came to the point of talking about what is going on with me and with my life.  The conversation made me very uncomfortable. Read More

Mocha Diaries: Why do I self-sabotage? : Laziness

Welcome to the Mocha Diaries! Mocha has been MIA for a while and it was high time she was found.

{ After  a recent conversation with a good friend back home that persuaded me to dig deeper as to why things bother me and find those answers. She said the better you understand yourself the easier it will be to love yourself and be your best friend. So with a homework assignment on hand I’ve decided to transcribe what I have found here. Somewhere along the way Mocha will be found and at the end of it all there will be inner peace for me.}

“Why do I self-sabotage?

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KIIP Level 4 Complete

Level 4 group picture. Our class was split in half two weeks in sadly. 🙁

       Since late last May I have been studying through the Korean Immigration and Integration Program. After successfully completing Level 3 I moved up to Level 4 in September. I really loved our new teacher’s teaching style and her bluntness. She was very adamant that everything we do should be in Korean. She specifically pointed out that if you are an English teacher you will have the hardest time to speak Korean due to being in a non-Korean speaking environment most of the day.

     So she made some suggestions:


  • put your cellphone in Korean
  • watch the news in Korean
  • read the news in Korean
  • watch Korean tv shows and movies
  • learn vocabulary in Korean

A lot of these suggestions I can do though it is more of a nuisance than I like. My phone is in Korean and I can use it just fine though sometimes I have to double check what something means so I don’t hit the wrong option. I hate reading news articles, but at least if I read the headlines I will know the major stories. As for TV shows and movies, I’m lazy. I’m an avid Korean drama watcher and I could easily drop the English subtitles. Yet, I watch it while I am relaxing so I don’t want to have to overthink it.  And for looking up Korean words in Korean, shoot me in the head. I’ve tried it and sometimes I get it.  But mostly, I still look everything up in English.

Level 4 in the beginning was hard for me as even though I knew half the class from level 3 no one was particularly friendly with me. The classes can be quite cliquey based on nationality. However, about half way through the semester the other students started to warm up to me more. We would share snacks and they would make small conversation. I even became friends with a really nice Uzbek Korean.  I really love the diversity in our class and we did a lot of fun things together like going to an event and having a potluck lunch party. Which had beer and lots of food from various countries!

The hardest part this time around was getting myself motivated to study. I really wanted to get an 80 this time in the class to prove to myself that I could do it. However, I wasn’t in the right mindset most of the time so it was really hard for me to stay focused during the 1o hour classes.  Luckily, I managed to get a 77. I’m not happy with the grade, but I know I did a lot better than many of my classmates.

Right now our program is on winter break so I am not ready to dive back in to studying.  But slowly I’ve been reading ahead and splitting the division of vocabulary with another friend I know who happens to be the same level at a different location. Level 5 will be a fun and interesting class. Its only 50 hours long and covers 50 4 page chapters about Korean society and history. Its a lot to absorb in 5 classes. I hope I have a good teacher as that can really make or break the class.  Classes are starting sometime in February and I can’t wait to see all of my classmates! I also can’t wait to pick up my certificate that shows I completed the language program!



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