Year Abroad : Looking Back at Term One

Tuesday, 3 May 2016

The following post was actually first drafted on 10th December 2015. I was nearly three months, my first term, into my year abroad. Sat on a plane, with nothing but Amy Poehler’s Yes Please and my thoughts I started rambling in the notes on my phone about things that had been flying around my head as my first semester was nearing its close. As this year nears the end I’ve found it interesting reflecting on what I felt I had learnt then compared to now. I will most likely do an updated version once I complete the year but for now, here are ten things I learnt in term one of my year abroad.

Being alone is hard
Okay so I may have been alone when I moved to the other side of the country for university but moving to a new country is a whole other kettle of fish. Not everyone around you is in the same boat. There’s not always someone to go home to and tell about your amazing or shitty day.

Being twenty (/young adulthood) is hard
Not knowing what the hell you’re doing in life is painted as kind of a big deal. I’m a big believer in everything working out but we all have those days.

What do I want to do?
This isn’t something I’ve learnt so much as something I haven’t as I have had several existential crises.

It’s okay to cry

It’s okay to cry down the phone to your dad at 4am
True story; I was drunk and my door collapsed.

Your parents want to understand
And if you’re lucky like me they will try and they will listen.

Doing the distance (this distance) is hard
George and I have lived in different cities for the past two years and this yes I have moaned about. Turns out doing distance for real is hard. Sometimes you just want to be with the one who makes you laugh without getting on a plane.

Doing the distance (this distance) is worth it
If you are lucky like me and are with someone that makes you laugh a lot and will brush your hair and buy you chips.

Being spontaneous really is fun
One Wednesday whilst moping around I decided to book flights to go and visit one of my best girl friends in Gran Canaria that weekend. I needed to regroup with someone I was close to and would understand. You will never regret money spent on visiting people or places.

People make everything
I knew this but I didn’t KNOW this. I think going on this big adventure by myself made it more exciting. Turns out I was wrong. My friends and I on so many occasions said how much fun it could have been if we’d been in this together. Sometimes you just need a coffee and cake date. Making friends here, and bloody good ones, has made such a difference to my experience. I’m so lucky to have such wonderful people in my life whom I miss so much – you all absolutely know who you are. An experience just isn’t the experience you want without the people you need.

I hope you've enjoyed this slightly more personal post for a change. Let me know what you think and if you've ever moved abroad!


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