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The Great American Transition

Hello from America, readers. I’ve been here since Saturday evening, and am just now sitting down to write my homecoming post. If I said it’s been an emotional roller coaster, would you believe me?

Coming home (to my original “home”) has been the best and worst thing that’s ever happened to me. The BEST part of it was seeing my family and close friends for the first time, and realizing that nothing has changed the way that we feel about each other. I am so happy to be in close proximity to them once again!

Mom stalked the reunion of me and Bitty, who ran to me before I could even get out of the customs doorway. We missed each other so much!

I didn’t even make it out of the doorway of customs before Bitty attacked me. I loved it.

BOGUE family picture in the airport, that's how we do.

BOGUE family picture in the airport, that’s how we do.

Accidentally reunited with my very best friend Christina while trying on dresses in the mall. CRYING HAPPY TEARS IN PUBLIC

Accidentally reunited with my very best friend Christina while trying on dresses in the mall. CRYING HAPPY TEARS IN PUBLIC!

I know, so cute…

The WORST part was that coming back to America has forced me to start yet another period of adaptation and change. I have always been naturally resistant to change, but bored by routine. This means that I walk a fine line between upheaval and monotony, since too much of either causes me stress and anxiety. Returning home was upheaval for me. I was surprised by this, as I thought I would only be a little uncomfortable and transition quite smoothly. Apparently, I was wrong, as I have been struggling a bit more than anticipated.

I knew that I had fallen in love with Copenhagen, but I had not been aware how deeply the Danish lifestyle had become ingrained in me. For example, simply prioritizing what needs to be achieved/obtained today and what can wait until tomorrow is different in America because here, we try to do too much, overschedule ourselves, and bite off more than we can chew at times. While such ambition is usually a healthy challenge for me, coming back and throwing myself right into that was quite difficult for me to deal with. After a trip to the mall on my first day back, I had to cancel one of my reunion visits and take a breather before I could move on to an evening get-together.

Then, of course, there’s the Danish value of spending time with loved ones, getting hygge. My family has appointments, meetings after school, and my dad works two jobs when he can. Thus, the reality of life catches up to me, and I am left to fold up my fuzzy blankets and blow out my tealight candles until Sunday, my new, strictly imposed Family Day. I wish we could just slow down and be cozy together like the Danes do every evening, even in the city. I miss that the most.

Overall, though, I’m making progress on my transition. Today is the first day I woke up feeling like I was in the right time zone. I’m glad to be back, but I also miss my home in Copenhagen. That’s the trouble with being such a lucky little lady, I can’t seem to settle on which life makes me happiest. I love them all.

Much love.

 

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Here Comes a Miz Post

Today was just one of those days.

I was actually almost convinced that every day of European life is a good one in some way… but I was wrong. Today was the third day that half of my friends here (including Mia) were gone on their short study tours, where DIS takes you around Western Denmark and houses you at hostels & the whole 9. But the other half of us are kind of like, wait… what do I do now? Routine has been established for the past two weeks and suddenly half of the people in the program are whisked away. Thanks, DIS, for keeping it interesting, but right now I think a good dose of Routine on the Rocks would have been better for me than this.

So tonight, finally, everyone came back. Regardless of the fact that I was exhausted from attempting to write a research paper all day, and just generally mopey, I went to go make dinner at Mia’s. On the way, there’s a right turn that I have to make, from asphalt road to cobblestone, in between two outdoor restaurants. SO OF COURSE I FALL OFF MY BIKE! This is not one of those graceful hiccups, either. It’s a straight up, full speed face plant. Wearing a backpack. The 25 people watching me gasped all at once, and I just got up and shrugged. It would have been hilarious if I was in a good mood, but since I was already miz, I was not a good sport.

Instead of cooking dinner like the usual Euro-dieters that we are, we went to Nordic Noodle and got some takeout Chinese. Then we sat down with all her (basically our, since I love them) housemates, a communal box of chocolate granola, and our computers. Our goal: book the flights for the second travel break.

We got all the way through Scotland, and almost to Paris, WHEN SUDDENLY MY CARD GOT DECLINED! Now, I am seriously being the most money-conscious student travelers anyone has ever known, so when I saw this, I immediately knew there had to be a problem. Sure enough, unauthorized charges all over my online statement. ARE. YOU. KIDDING. ME. After 45 minutes on the phone with Wells Fargo, I have a new debit card in the mail, which will get here in TWO WEEKS. Looks like I’ll be eating notebook paper till then.

All this, and all I want is a hug from someone I know well. 4,000 miles is too much distance between this sad little lady and her big old support group.

I guess I learned that not every day in Copenhagen is taken out of a fairytale, but if it wasn’t for days like these, I would not truly appreciate the magical ones.

Goodnight, readers. I hope tomorrow is a better day in paradise.

SIX DAYS!

Posted on

With under a week remaining until takeoff, I am starting to experience the calm before the emotional storm.

In the past two days, I have:

  • purchased all toiletries necessary for 4 months of cleanliness
  • found a gorgeous pair of Steve Madden leather boots, thank you Marshalls!
  • borrowed a huge suitcase from my friend/coworker Melissa
  • packed EVERYTHING into two suitcases (this is a HUGE deal because packing is super overwhelming for me, I have too many clothes. I used Space Saver bags, though, which take the air out of everything)
  • taken passport photos for any IDs that DIS needs to make when I arrive
  • chatted on the phone with my sanity, Nan (who has taught at Villanova and DIS!)
  • bonded with my bro, Ben, over Wrath of the Titans
  • planned a luau for the End of Summer Party for my nuggets at TLCC (more on them later)
  • planned a fun week of goodbyes/social events for my last week!

After all this, I am beginning to think that Copenhagen will come as a relief!

But honestly, I think this interim part between being physically ready to go and actually going is the best part. It’s at this time when the reality of the situation starts to sink in. I am going away, and I will not be back for a long time.

More importantly, I love the way people act during this final week of spending time together. Everyone laughs louder, cries a little, and hugs more. We are all reminded of how much we truly love those around us, and that time with them is precious. It reminds me of one of my favorite pieces of wisdom I learned when I was a little girl:

“Live every day like it’s your last, ’cause one day, it will be.”

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