It's been three years since I lived here, and the entire time I've been away, the only thought in my head is how to get back. Finally I'm in a position with my company that there appears to be a possible path back to 日本!
I took the JLPT2 test in December of last year. The results should be arriving within the next couple weeks. Last year I studied day and night preparing for the test. I kept thinking that the only way to have a secure future in Japan lie in holding a certification of proficiency. After all, I'm not really sure that's the case.
The person who works the hardest for the longest usually wins. That's all there is to living and working successfully in Japan (as something other than an English teach or bar owner). You just have to want it the most.
And I do.