Thursday, 9 July 2015

Its not all fun and games...

When I first moved to Korea I was told to expect some form of homesickness. I didn’t know when it would come and what exactly it would feel like but I knew that sooner or later it would hit me. What I didn’t know however is how much it would hit me. I’ve written about homesickness here before but I thought that it was worth mentioning again as this really is a big part of moving to a different country. The highs are extremely high and the lows are extremely low, make no mistake about that. Its only after 3 weeks of feeling this way and then another month of not wanting to remember that feeling, that I finally feel as if I should probably get it all down on paper.

I can suggest a number of different things to do like call home, plan a trip, keep yourself busy or try and find some home comforts, but unfortunately I think for most people it’s really just a wave you have to ride out. Be rest assured though that you will come out at the other end feeling stronger and more prepared for the next time... when it undoubtedly will happen again! Personally I haven’t missed things like food or the convenience of popping into a Tesco’s Express to get my entire weeks worth of shopping, but more so my friends and family and the people I love.

I miss their company and I miss the laughs. I miss the comfort of not having to worry about myself and knowing that there is always someone looking out for me, as I am looking out for them. I have never before appreciated my friends and family on such a level, and I am sure I took them for granted. Moving to a different country so far away from them has its moments and I can honestly say that I've never spent so much time with myself... how they all do it?! I just don’t know. But I have of course become more independent and this can only be a good thing.  

On the flip-side I have already made some incredible friendships here in Korea that I could never have anticipated. This is something that I really didn’t expect, but it is also probably the toughest part of living here because as things go, people leave. With people coming and going so often you would think that it would be difficult to become attached and make proper connections with them, but you really really do.

You have no close friends or family to support you out here and so the people you befriend, quickly (in the best possible way) become a strange sort of replacement for that huge missing part of your life. You see them day in and day out and they soon become part of the furniture, and then comes the dreaded day of departure when they have to leave. Everything you have come accustom to changes, and you’re back on your own once again. And that’s when you remember how you felt before, and what you didn’t want to feel again. Homesick.

Therefore the question is, would you rather form these close friendships and enjoy them for what they are at the time? Or, spend the whole experience not making any real connections to save yourself the pain? Its a tough one but personally I don't think there is much of a choice. I would 100% rather have met these amazing people even though it is very sad when they have to leave.

Surely the whole point of this experience, is the experience itself of meeting new people from all over the world?! Why would anyone want to miss out on that? I think at the end of the day its important to remember that you are a human being, and human beings (on the whole) need other human interaction to survive. The more people you meet, the more places you go, and the more places you go, the more you will learn to not only survive, but thrive on this little planet we like to call, Earth.

So say YES to everything, Skype home as much as you can, and remember that when one person leaves ...another will soon arrive, and the fun times will begin all over again! 

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