there comes a point in an immigrant’s life when you no longer are visiting the new country in which you find yourself. the honeymoon is over. there comes a time when all of the sudden you realize that you have become part of society. you no longer live as an outsider, but face real life in your new country. i have no idea how long it is until you reach this point for most people, but for me, it took 9 months.
perhaps it’s because i know that i am going to visit the states & my family in a few weeks; perhaps it’s because i very well may be completing my swedish classes in a few weeks; perhaps it’s because i must, must, must begin to speak in swedish all the time; or perhaps it’s because i need to begin to focus on what comes next… whatever the reason (and most likely it is all of those reasons combined), i am fighting the desire to run into my shell and stay there. it’s scary to face my new place in society and all the pressures that come with adjusting to it. it’s hard to figure out exactly where i belong & what i can do here. it’s hard to express myself in another language & hard for my personality to come out when i feel like i talk like a 5 year old. it’s time for me to move on, move up, and dive deeper into this swedish life, and all i want to do is hide. i am scared. confused. homesick.
and while i’m at the place where i need to throw myself whole-heartedly into swedish society (in order to master the language), i am stuck at the same time. if i am not studying swedish, then what do i do? my internship only lasts 6 weeks, so that will end at the same time my studying ends. what comes next? what do i want to come next? and does what i want even really matter? no matter what, i believe that i must take more classes in order to be a teacher in sweden (which is not really what i want to do anyway). and i can’t do anything with my master’s of divinity degree (long story). then, of course, i can explore the possibility of studying more (= working on a PhD), but that would not be for another year. i’m a little stressed. confused. worried. it’s nice to know, though, that others who have moved here have faced the same feelings/challenges. i know that i just need to book a time with someone who helps us immigrants figure out what to do & how to do it. so, that’s what i’m gonna do. that will help out so much, so i need to just set aside all of this worrying until i talk with him/her.
i am certain that all of these feelings are a phase, part of the process. i must resist the urge to hide myself away, and keep fighting. i must trust myself. and never, ever change who i am as i adapt to all the new things that face me. a new country, a new society, a new language will not change me… they will only add more experiences and more knowledge to who i already am. somehow, since i have been here 9 months now, i have lost the sense of adventure of living here. but, i must remind myself that every day of everyday life is an adventure in itself. though i feel a strong desire to be surrounded by things that are familiar and return to old ways, i must fight on… for i know that so much amazing stuff lies ahead. besides, what do you learn & how can you truly grow if everything is easy? yes. every day is an adventure. through the tough times, through the fear, after the uncertainty comes a new level, a new circle, a new perspective. without the mountains and the valleys and the plains, the journey would be boring. so, i will not hide, i will walk on & dive in…
with all that said, it’s time to experience this day & all that comes with it. it’s time to see where this day leads me. it’s weekend now and lina & i have 3 days off, so there are many adventures to explore! woo hoo! hope you enjoy your friday to the fullest!