I’m Moving To China: Why Wanderers Can Give You The Fail-Safe Relationship You’ve Been Looking For


“But I’m moving to China…”

has been my excuse for EVERYTHING since October 2012 when I signed my contract. Think of it as my proverbial “YOLO” or “You Only Live Once.” In reality, you only DIE once, but I prefer to be an optimist. Fear has voluntarily removed itself out my emotional capacity because I’ve dramatized American things, places, and people into something permanently fleeting. SO SCREW IT. Screw the fear of being rejected, or lost, or failing at something that doesn’t really matter all that much because I am leaving.

“This is the last time I’ll EVER do XYZ… I better go all out.”

I’ve used it at bars, restaurants, friends, family, and especially men. Something about a time-stamped relationship suddenly disarms men to really take a chance on love-but not really. Interestingly, it has inspired people in general to really become vulnerable and dynamic with me because who am I going to tell? I’m moving to China. I am the perfect practice girlfriend, friend, or employee because IT’S OKAY if things don’t work out between us. I’m moving to the other side of the world. It was bound to end sometime. It’s really no one’s fault. There, there. There. There.

But what happens when I actually make the transition and the people I’m meeting or dating no longer have a time stamp? Will I cherish the relationship more and put in my 100%? Or will I take the relationship for granted because I know it’ll always be there since Asia seems to be the permanent move? Also, part of my appeal is my fearlessness and if the world around me suddenly has (got forbid) consequences, will I warp into a different/more boring person?!?!

However, if you asked anyone who knows me beyond the blog, they’d tell you that I would not and could not ever allow myself to become boring (or stop doing CrossFit)… but I there is still a chance! And it terrifies me!

For the last 10 months, my staple phrase has been:

“Hi my name is Vanessa and I’m moving to China.”

Which then progresses into the surface level conversation of…

—“Do you know Mandarin?”
—“Do you know anyone there?”
—“Have you ever been there?”
—“How long are you going to be over there?”
—“Wow, you’re brave.”
I prefer crazy.

This self-declared “craziness” has subsequently landed me a ton of special new friends whom feel the need to constantly include me in their mundane lives to spice it up FOR them. Whether it’s in a romantic relationship or friendship, I have forcefully been put in charge of providing other people with excitement, drama, and Shakespeare!

But I am not responsible for your happiness. I am not your shinny new toy.

I’ll tell you what I am though. I AM moving to China in 7 days and I don’t want to spend my last fleeting moments in this country trying to make a perpetually unhappy person see the value in the exhilarating world around them.

I am the perfect relationship for you because I am the proverbial training wheels to your “big boy/girl bike.” Never had a long-term relationship? Great! Just practice with me until my departure date. Have difficulties making new friends? That’s okay too! Because I can meet people for you and then you get to keep them because I’m on the other side of the world. This seems really fair to me, said no wanderer ever.

Point is: don’t take advantage of wanderers.

– Someone who constantly moves and resettles in new territories with no perpetual plan to colonize

We are a very emotional community without a permanent place in the world; it wears on you. The reason we can make friends or emotional connections quickly is purely out of necessity. It is a basic survival strategy most of us have developed while jumping from city to city, country to country.

The ONLY reason I am the perfect relationship for you is because you can love me without fear. We might have nothing in common, but when it ends, it’s no one’s fault. There is a safety net already in place for you that we’ve both agreed upon prior to the start of the relationship. So you can experiment or fail without the anxiety of it coming back to haunt you. Chances are, you’ll never see me again. Nor will I ever see you.

Because I’m moving to China.

But at the same time, I’ve chosen this life voluntarily. Nobody forced me to do anything. I made this bed and now I have to sleep in it alone. If you’re truly unhappy, bored, or feel like you’re just stuck-come find me on the other side of the world. Then we’ll talk.

Perfect Girlfriend


One thought on “I’m Moving To China: Why Wanderers Can Give You The Fail-Safe Relationship You’ve Been Looking For

  1. This article (if they’re called articles?) is beautiful. I want to leave America to teach English when I graduate. Where, you ask? Who knows, but your confidence is contagious and inspiring. Thank you for it.

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