The title says it all, this is just a little “hello”, or a little thought barf because my mind has been racing these past few days. A post with a recap and documentations of the past month (I realize its been a while, sorry) will come shortly. I don’t have wi-fi in my room so I can’t upload any of the photos from my phone – but I’ll be on the hunt for a router this weekend!
Anyways, this is just me talking as myself. Myself if I was in Davis, myself if I was in Santa Barbara. Because although all of these pictures do give you an idea of what I’ve been doing, and a recap of my experiences sheds some light on what living abroad has been like, it does not capture everything.
In short I love it here. I could not imagine a better experience in whole for myself or a better place to live in outside of the United States. And although the new places, new friends, and new experiences have been far more stimulating than I could have ever imagined, homesickness does exist. The other day I thought a lot about what I’m missing back in the states, how I am not able to see the friends I used to see every day, how I am essentially out of touch for the period I am living here, and how truly god awful this time difference is.
Which brings me to the main point: I am not able to talk to everyone back at home often because we really only have two times to keep in touch (my morning or your night), and its difficult to work it out. Sometimes I think of how weird it is that I have not been able to communicate with my family or friends for over a week, or even over a month.
I understand that I won’t be able to grasp the experiences everyone back at home partakes in, or the subtle changes that everyone grows through. And that is 100% okay, because as far as I’m concerned none of that matters in terms of what you all mean to me. I will always respect and try to understand whatever occurs when I am abroad, and will always love my family and friends unconditionally. The people in your life who love you don’t always have to be right by your side, and I feel extraordinarily lucky to be able to have people in different places that mean so much to me.
Things feel odd because “real life” here in Sweden is starting to kick in. There are exams I should be studying for, obligations I should be focused on, and goals I should be pursuing. However it is difficult for me to do any of this because it seems as though it is somewhat unreal. It seems as though without the familiarity of the surroundings and people I have built my academic and personal objectives around, “real life” can’t be constructed here in Sweden. I have been wanting to chat with everyone from home more-so than before because it somehow feels as though I need to remember myself by reacquainting with the things I am used to.
But I know that this is all a matter of my thoughts, and in truth there are many opportunities for me to do the things I want to do and continue pursuing the things I have been right here in Sweden. It just takes a little time to adjust to actually living in Sweden (aside from constantly travelling around without obligations).
I just wanted to write all of this out because I want my family and friends to understand that I am living in Sweden, not touring it. It is exciting, inspiring, and loads of fun. But it is also life in general. While I’m discovering parts of living here that make me feel like the luckiest person on the planet, there are also the minor downs and thoughts or worries of home. I am trying to establish a sense of identity and security here in Sweden as I did in Davis and Santa Barbara.
So although this blog and other platforms of communication help tremendously with keeping in touch, it is impossible for me to relay everything I am experiencing. It is difficult for me to truly communicate the ways I am falling in love with living abroad and the ways in which I might be having some trouble, just as it is difficult for you to communicate everything to me. That is why it sometimes feels odd to talk to family or friends after large gaps of time. But the fact is we don’t need to communicate everything. As long as we understand that there are reasons and experiences behind whatever parts of our lives we do see, we’re golden. Because although we may be physically separate we are not growing apart. I don’t even really believe that people change, people just grow. And because I know that I will never feel less connected to any of you, and that I will always love the people who are a part of my life from young to old, I like to think that we’re growing together.
All in all I am realizing that this whole being separated thing is nothing to sweat. I am tremendously looking forward to seeing everyone, and because keeping in good touch can only be a positive thing, I’ll be working out this time difference one way or another.
Sorry for the cheesiness, or the unexpected thoughts. I just want you all to know that I’m living life like anyone else- ups, downs, funky 360 dances. And PLEASE don’t take this with any type of concern, homesickness will never make me forget how amazing this life is. Life is bright, and we will always have the opportunity to make it brighter. I just want to be upfront and honest so we can all communicate better and throw aside the useless worrying of losing touch with one other.
I will always love you (cue music).
Trav Binky Tortuga Travii T-RAV InZANE-in-the-membrane
P.S. Let’s stick to the first nickname.