This spring, University of California, Irvine student Shirelle Chalamish spent a semester studying abroad in Madrid and Rome. For this week’s post, Shirelle takes us through the many stages of adjusting to life abroad.
There’s nothing like the rush you get when you’re finally able to tell your friends and family that you’ve been accepted to your desired study abroad program. Everything about your life, the way you view the remaining days you have left in your home country, how you speak to those you love transforms because of this impending life change. You suddenly find yourself trying to savor every moment, every daily task or interaction, just to gain a mental snapshot of what you’re leaving behind. Even packing, a task you’ve gotten more used to since moving away for college, has suddenly become a nearly impossible task. But you’re leaving, you’re going to explore a new society and culture, and every aspect of this new adventure (even the harder parts) is completely worth it.