WOW! Never before did I think I would have ever seen the day where I would be writing this post! It seemed like just days ago I was sitting in English, my favorite class, trying so desperately hard to pay attention, but was really just writing down my 97 day countdown in my agenda! (Sorry Woz :) Oh and by the way Joyeux Noël! (Merry Christmas in French) I hope all of you had a fantastic holiday!
Okay, so back to the recent events. ***Remember, I pledged to tell the truth, so some of this may be brutally honest.*** First off, I am finished with school in the US! My last day was incredibly cinematic, especially since it was the last day before holiday break. We mostly had parties or watched movies, although I did have a test, and a couple of fun things happened throughout the day as well. My favorite moment was when all of my friends from concert band played Christmas tunes throughout 7th period. It was at that moment that I realized I wasn't just going to miss my family or Camilla, but I was going to miss all of those familiar faces I have grown to cherish immensely.
For all of you planning to study abroad, do it. I just know it is going to be incredible. Although, be prepared for the intense emotion that comes with it as well. I cannot possibly describe in words how grateful and blessed I am to have this experience, but even the preparation for this journey comes with challenges as well. I have had moments where I cannot believe I am even doing this myself, moments of pure shock. There are other time however where I run around the house jumping up and down just from a message I received from my host family, and am trying to figure out how I can stand to be in the US for even just ten more days when I know France is waiting for me! Here's the brutally honest part, I am also so incredibly nervous, anxious and scared about this whole journey as well. I have had moments where I can't focus because I am sitting thinking of the "what if,..." scenarios, or get a little teary (okay you got me I cry, hard) thinking of how I am going to leave my family, and my other half, Camilla, behind. For all of you future exchange students reading this, please don't even think twice about turning back. From everything I have read or everyone I have talked to, this is completely normal. I just know I can do this because I was brave and dedicated enough to even go through this process in the first place, and that is such an incredible feeling.
I think that's something beautiful I am already learning about study abroad. I never expected this to be easy, I know I am going to have some absolutely miserable days, but I also am certain that I will have some fantastic days, and some incredible revelations like this one now, that will be so worth all of the struggle. I have already met some incredible people through study abroad who I can relate to on a whole new level intellectually. I have already learned so much more about myself and my friends. I have already looked at the US in a whole new way. I have already learned more about language, and I haven't even left yet.....and I can't wait to learn more. :)