Are you currently working or still studying and considering of working somewhere, may it be in your own country or abroad? Still uncertain?
I’m currently working abroad for 5 ages now, in 4 different companies. Yep! that’s a lot of companies considering its only 5 years. I have mentioned it in “You Deserve It!” as to why I have to keep on shifting jobs. Regrets? Other than not seeing my dad for 2 years before he passed away, I have nothing to regret. Is it hard? Yes, it is really difficult! Especially now that the globe is experiencing war with COVID19, the feeling of yearning to be with your family just to guarantee their safety and to support them emotionally and physically. It’s hard to be apart from your family, I missed a lot of; birthdays, festivals, weddings, family gatherings, Christmas’, new years and so forth. It’s hard not to see them, hold them, kiss them, cry with them and laugh with them. How about video calling them? Yes it is the most accessible way to see them but, I’m working here in the Middle East, and in this country, a video call isn’t that easy to use. Messenger call, Whatsapp call, and Skype are all blocked, I have to try several apps and VPNs until I stumbled upon zoom, but my mom is not a techie, so even if it’s easy to use, it’s kinda difficult for her.
Some people here are really nice and kind, especially the locals, it’s their country yet other expats like me think they own the place by the way they act. I’m of Asian descent and I have been verbally discriminated and racially profiled. At first, it was really hurtful, but as time passes by, I just don’t let it get into my nerves, it’s not worthy of time. Even how hard you explain yourself to them, they will not listen. I actually pity those kinds of people, why? Because they are insecure, cannot move on and humiliating themselves to society. Hopefully one day, there will be no people who will judge you by the shade of your skin and by your ethnicity, let’s also include people who have disabilities.
Do I earn a lot? Hhhhmmm compared to what I’m making when I was still working in my country, yes. Because the exchange rate is high, so my wage is high as well– at least if it’s converted to peso. I’m living and renting a room in a villa with 2 people. Lucky me, the rent is not expensive and it’s near to my office. But most people are going for a bedspace as it is really affordable. Bedspace is renting either, the upper or the lower bed of the double-deck in a room with other 6 people. There’s also called partition, wherein you will rent a small space inside a room, having your privacy compared to bed spacer as landlords built a thin wooden wall to separate you from other tenants. If you are fortunate enough to have a high salary, then you can rent a flat.
Perks of working overseas? Excellent salary package, great insurance if you are in a good company, you get to travel oftentimes as it is more affordable and accessible, extensive connection- new friends and families, got the chance to engage with different nationalities and learn their cultures, let’s say it will develop your communication skills since English is the universal language and you don’t have any option but to use it to interact, a yearly plane ticket for my annual leave, big servings of food (in my country foods are expensive plus the servings are too small), and molding you to be a great independent person. If you are in western countries, then the chance of acquiring citizenship is plausible.
Life as an overseas worker is not as easy as it appears to be. Some people believe that working abroad makes us wealthy and it’s sad because some friends or relatives will ask you favor, and if you can’t give them what they asked for, you are a selfish person in their eyes and will compare you to other overseas workers. People have different types of work and a sense of responsibility which they don’t seem to understand. You need to adjust to their cultures, rules and abide their law. I have to be away from my family so I can support them and provide what they need. Give them what I want them to have. I have to work harder so I can reward myself for doing a great job. There are days I have to eat merely this type and kind of food so I can save more. Of course, there are also days that I will eat and pig out and go to an expensive beanery. I’m quite fortunate compared to other overseas workers who barely eat and sleep properly just to earn more and send money to their families. Am I happy? So-so, pleased that I can provide what my family needs and wants, I can somehow buy what I want. And just what I’ve been telling the whole time, sad and hard because I’m away from my family. Sacrificing is what overseas workers do all the time. Homesickness is a powerful enemy of us. The word says it all. Courage is our shield and Family is what motivates us.