The Big Move: Why You Should Live In Another Country Even For Just Once In Your Life
It has been 7 months since I packed my stuff, hugged my parents and boarded the plane going to Warsaw, Poland. A lot of people were shocked with my sudden decision to move and also a lot of people have asked me: "why?!" And my response was “why not?”
I've spent 27 years of my life in my homeland and in the last 2 years I had an existential crisis. I felt like my life was stuck on a limbo and I was going on loop with the everyday mundane life to the point that even going out of town on the weekends or going for a long holiday didn’t make those feelings go away – I knew I had to do something about it. I needed a new perspective. So I decided to leave my home country and move to another one.
Living in another country is often misunderstood as a vacation/pleasure.
Ever since I got here a lot of people have told me how they want to move out of the country too and live the life- as if they are not living it right now. Let's be real - from where I come from, if you move outside the country - it means you are rich/entitled/privileged otherwise you can't. It’s fascinating how posting a photo of me eating a donut can stir up an idea that I am indeed living a glamorous life. Don’t get me wrong, I’ve been on the other side too. I’ve envied people who were able to just go and move. But now that I am here I've realized it's not all rainbows and butterflies. It's not glamorous at all but it is fulfilling.
Living in another country introduces you to new sets of challenges and experiences.
The first months were a struggle. I forgot to do my research. I moved in an unfamiliar country where English is not the main language and the weather is mostly cold and unpredictable (my poor tropical soul was in a state of shock). I remember struggling with asking directions the first time because I didn’t have mobile data yet. There were no shops or bars open 24/7 and you can’t just randomly ask for a drink after work with anyone because everyone had plans. I also couldn't just go to a mountain on a whim because I might probably die since I have no sense of direction and again it is cold!
Moving here taught me how I am such a tiny speck of a human living in such a big big world. It feels like I am back to kindergarten again trying to figure out the basic things that I need to know if I want to live/survive (#laundry #ironing #cooking). On top of that I am back to school taking up Master's in Big Data Analytics, going on acting/musical workshops and trying out new things . I am constantly learning and growing. I am living a new day-to-day routine. I’ve learned to embrace the culture, the people and the way of living. I also discover something new about myself from time to time with the new experiences that I encounter.
Living in another country makes you appreciate the little things back at home.
As I am meeting new people, seeing new places and immersing in a different culture, I am not only embracing all the new stuff I am facing but I’ve also learned to appreciate the things that I often overlooked back at home: How everything is so accessible and convenient. Surf spots are only 4 hours away. Mountains are 2 hours away even. The street food. Karaoke. Sisig Hooray. Caramel beer sa Rue. Lomi. Seeing a new culture makes me understand my culture even more and appreciate the time I've spent with my family and friends.
Traveling and exploring a new country is great. You discover a whole new world, you get to see places and get to taste a complete different culture that you don’t have back at home. But living and immersing in a new country, creating a new normal makes a difference. Try it and see for yourself. :)