Welcome to my little blog I’ve started. I’m going on my third year in Ireland and I still find myself in awe that I live here. The greenery and scenery are still as charming as the day I arrived. Growing up, my parents would always bring my brother and I to where they’re from in the west of Ireland, which is just stunning. So naturally, being submerged into Irish culture, I fell in love with the country. When university time came around, I packed two suitcases and moved to outside of Dublin to study arts.
What People Don’t Tell You About Moving Far Away (or studying abroad/erasmus):
- You don’t need two suitcases. You don’t need all that stuff, please believe me. I wish I could tell 18 year old me to stop packing random things I thought I’d want with me that I’d never look at again. One case and a duffel bag is plenty. Choose wisely what you’ll bring. If I could do it again, all I’d pack is clothes and my makeup and some pictures, honestly. You’ll accumulate so much stuff when you’re abroad! Just buy toiletries there.
Have you already moved with too much? Just bring bare essentials plus the random stuff you’ve decided was unnecessary next time you fly home-home, and leave it there.
- You will miss stuff. Home is a state of mind but of course there is no comfort like your actual ‘I’m-from-here’ home. Luckily, I don’t get homesick much. Have I? Of course. When my birthday rolls around every year I always sulk a bit that my mom isn’t there to bake cute cupcakes or put my orange juice in a champagne glass for that extra birthday fun effect. I’m from a beach town at home so I miss my little walks along the shore.
WARNING: If you have pets, you’re A) blessed and B) going to miss them more than a person. A sad reality of mine is that I FaceTime my dog regularly. That’s kind of sad, right? I have screenshots.
- Skip decor. If you’re like me and you move accommodation frequently as a student, resist decorating to your heart’s content. Again, it’s just more stuff to pack when you move.
- Meeting people can be awkward. I have met some seriously incredible people in Ireland. All unique and talented and beautiful people I get to call my friends. Obviously you’ll meet people you may dislike or find your energies just don’t mix together in a good way anymore, and that’s okay! Don’t let that discourage you from getting out there and meeting more people. I’ve managed to meet new friends all along my journey! Try inviting someone for a cup of coffee or an event for chats.
– Try meeting your flatmates, neighbors
– Get involved in clubs (I didn’t, but I wish I did!)
– Experience the nightlife if that’s an interest of yours
– Meet your friend’s friends
- Keep positive and distract yourself! If you’re nervous, just know it’s natural and you’re going to have so much fun (I hope anyway). Moving is a magical time of starting fresh and meeting some lovely friendly faces that may end up accompanying you in life for who knows how long!
- Stuff will go wrong. C’est la vie. There’s going to be countless ups and downs. Boys will break your heart and you’ll cry in bed with Ben and Jerry’s to Adele. You’ll buy way too much Ben and Jerry’s and regret it because it’s not healthy and now you are kind of broke. You’ll miss your parents and friends. You’ll miss their birthday celebrations and feel bad. Again, your pets. There will be days where all you want to do is ring home but your family is at work or asleep due to the time difference. Lord knows somedays all I want is a medium iced mocha coconut toasted almond coffee made regular from Dunkin Donuts.Distract yourself, you will be just fine.
I am seriously thankful my move and transition to Irish life went so, so swimmingly. I was young, and still am at ripe ol’ twenty, but when I look back I realize it actually was easier than I thought. After high school I was ready for a break from my small Massachusetts town. Ireland was obviously very familiar to me having grown up with the culture and I assume that’s what made it a lot less challenging. I’m super grateful to have a foot in two different countries.
Goodluck if you’re planning a big move!