It’s been three months. Three months since I left behind everything and everyone I’ve ever known. Three months since I jumped on a plane to meet people and places that I had never dreamed of.
People tell me I’m brave for doing that. They ask “how can you leave for that much time to go to a place where you don’t know a single person and they don’t speak your language?” But the actual question is how can you not?
Exchange is so much more than simply coming to live with different people in a different place.
Exchange means exactly what it means.
It means sharing your knowledge, culture, thoughts, and laughter with someone and being able to receive theirs.
It means being confused most of the time and loving every minute of it. It means missing someone desperately and then reminding yourself of the big picture and that it’s worth it.
It means loving people like you’ve known them forever when you only met them a little while ago, and the bare thought that you have to leave them soon just kills you.
It means getting to your edges and then pushing them, only to find out that you’re much stronger than that.
It means being excited to go to the next town, or even to the supermarket, just because it’s a place you’ve never been before.
It means constant mood swings. It means learning to make every minute count, and just learning in general, all the time.
It means discovering who you really are when none of the labels you always had to live with are there.
It means doing everything you already did in a way you’ve never done before.
It means being infinite.
May the next 7 months go really slowly.
Written by: Thaís Catão