As I deal with another one of my insomniac episodes… I find myself listening to Oasis, “Stop Crying Your Heart Out” (I know I am a bit of a masochist) I finally got the inspiration to write again. I have had to rewrite this post several times, but tonight after having a conversation with someone it finally gave me some clarity.
Why would I talk about this ? Reason number one, I met a lot of people the past month due to a job opportunity who are starting the same journey and I help guide them. So this is for them… Secondly, to just prove I am human… I feel a lot of people have this misconception that I live a really charmed life and everything is lollipops and unicorns. Yes, I do but life is not perfect sometimes you just feel like $H*t. However, before you decide to sell everything and move some where… far… far away. Here are somethings I am going through and maybe this could help someone you know.
Number 1: Let it flow because it comes in waves. I feel that some of my friends experienced homesickness early on. Yours truly on the other hand, homesickness reached an all time high when I finally got a place of my own place in Madrid. I believe it is the realization that this place could be a place I could live long term. I have had to try to stop being so hard with myself and go ahead and let myself feel whatever emotions I feel. I am usually use to saying everything is ok when clearly it is not. If I was pissed off that day than just be mad … If you want to cry just cry. Lesson on this wave of emotions DON’T ignore it feels like you are riding a wave. Well the last time I surfed I swallowed the ocean but whatever … Who is keeping track.
Number 2:Issues you may have are exacerbated. When you are in your place of comfort some of the small things like getting into a disagreement with someone, breakup, death in the family, moving … or just anything that involves any degree of change can feel 10 times worse. On the flip side when you have moments of happiness, great conversation, drinks with old friends or new ones it feels like you are on cloud 9. Lesson on mission exacerbate: It’s NORMAL to feel such polar opposite emotions you are so far away from home and you don’t have a support system.
Number 3: Kisses Vs. Hugs. This seems trivial but important. Greeting here with two kisses has its enchantment. In fact, it was one of my favorite aspects of the culture. Let’s face it when you go state side we hug family, friends, friendenemies, and coworkers. We even give that awkward side pat on the back hug sometimes. I realized that this quote stands to be true more now than ever. ” Maybe home is nothing but two arms holding you tight when you are are your worst”. According to research we are suppose to hug. Lesson on mission XO: Beyonce is right you should hug more…
Number 4: Face time and FACETIME is important.Face time with the people in your adopted country important. It sometimes can be difficult in Spain despite the misconception of openness. I’m not saying they are not friendly but you have to understand that most of these friendships have happened since there were in the womb or grade school. You do find yourself trying harder trying to infiltrate the spanish circles which causes at times exhaustion and social anxiety. In reality it never killed anyone to try harder. FACETIME was an essential this summer! I am eternally grateful to Steve Jobs being able to see my friends and family has eased some of my anxiety. Lesson on Mission FACE Time and FACETIME: stay busy in your adopted home and contact those at home.
Number 5: Last, but not least I’m calling this the Guiri hang-up. Guiri is a term for foreigners in Spain. Guiri Hang-up in my opinion is this constant tug-a-war between two places. This puts you in a confusing place you yearn to be around what is familiar but you still have an impulse for the foreign. Lesson on Mission GUIRI HANG-UP … will report back I am still trying to figure it out.
Just because I have been able to capture great moments it does not mean that my life is perfect. I know I was an active participant in everything that has come my way. If anything this has taught me to appreciate the good and the bad. To try not to beat myself up when things are not quite right. Even though sometimes I feel straight up alone (not to be confused with lonely) the most I can do is be proactive and deal with it and keep riding the train. Maybe help others along the way to say you are not alone.