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Ana Jimena Students 19 Sep 2018

6 things that happen when you go back home after living abroad.

By: Ana Jimena Hernandez

It is said that living abroad is not easy, and perhaps you know this because it might be the experience that you are going through as you read. However, many students who have finished their studies and face the situation of going back home can confront mixed feelings.

At the beginning nothing it's easy, and often it seemed as though you would never be able to fit in the new place, but you actually did it! Then time passed quickly, and now you must leave this place behind and return to the place you know, or you thought you knew, home.

Coming back home could be overwhelming. Many things motivate you, but there are also other things that could make you feel sad. Many international students had returned home satisfied, even when they left part of their heart in Australia. It is not wrong to feel that way, in fact, it is quite reasonable. Living abroad is a unique experience, and many things change in your life when you decide to do it. For all who have left and for those who are about to leave their home country, this post talks about 6 normal situations that happen to people who return home after living abroad.

1.       You are the same, but you are also another person.

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Although maybe the time you lived overseas was not very long, it was enough to change you in many ways. Don´t get me wrong, in essence, you're the same, but every experience lived in that other place gave you tools to grow and mature. Your mind was opened to the world, and that person you were has changed a lot. You grew up, you learned. Maybe you don't notice it in the beginning, but you will as you face new challenges. Your family will see it as much as your friends, but you must never forget your essence and what makes you unique, you should embrace everything new about yourself.

2.       You will value your culture.

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You have opened your mind to the world, and it will let you see how valuable the place where you were born is. The people,  the music, the landscape, the food. You will come home wanting to know your own country better, to understand your culture fully and to be able to share it with others. You will feel proud of it (even more!), and you will have a different perspective of what you have.

3.       You will miss the place you left behind.

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It is unavoidable. No matter how long you were there, you will miss many things. The new friends, the food, the special moments, the unique experiences, everything. You will find a way to keep in touch with the people you left and especially with the person you were while living away from home. You will have to adapt to your new life, but surely you will do it fast because, intrinsically, you already know it.

4.       Some people will feel that they do not know you anymore.

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You were out long enough to create new memories and living experiences with other people. It is possible that your family and friends feel you as a strange at first and that's normal. They will want you to tell your stories, but soon they may get tired of you repeating them over and over again, and especially because they know they are not in any of them. You will have to find a balance so as not to bore anyone, but to keep in your memory all those moments that you will always want to remember.

5.       You will re-discover your city.

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It will be fun to go back and see new buildings, restaurants, streets that you used to go through and that now look different. You will discover your city. You will find it refreshing. You will want to wander it again, drive around the town, enjoy the weather, the food, the landscape. You will feel strange in the beginning, but it will be exciting.

6.       You will want to travel again.

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You made it! You left home, you had your adventure. Coming back doesn't mean you won’t do it again. Coming back means you are going to recharge your energy for your next trip. As an international student you met many people of different nationalities, and now you have friends living around the world. There is no better motivation than the idea of doing it all over again. And you can do it again! Now you know the hows, and I assure you, each time it will be more fun and more accessible in some ways.

You should be happy to return home and share everything you learned.  Share your experience with everybody and motivate other people to pursue their dreams, just like you did.

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