Today is the day. The day we’ve all been waiting for. Okay, just me. Today is the day that I fly to London to begin my study abroad adventure. I will be (hopefully) falling asleep as I fly over the Atlantic ocean for the first time and waking up in a whole new world. As I am writing this, I am sitting in the Atlanta airport happily perched next to an outlet and reflecting on the weeks that led up to this very moment.
Honestly, the process of studying abroad was much more time consuming than I anticipated. I figured I would just make the decision and *bam* I could go. To my surprise, the decision was the easiest part! Studying abroad was something that had been on my radar since I was in high-school. It was always described to me as a once in a lifetime opportunity. A chance to explore the world, meet new friends and step out of your comfort zone. What could be better than that? But then came the work: researching programs, applying for a passport, taking the terrifying plunge of booking the flight even though part of you is certain something will go wrong. Even when all of the planning and preparation is complete, you have to shop for a laundry list of items that became essentials practically over night. I mean sure, you need converters and luggage and weather appropriate clothing. But you may also convince yourself that you also need a brand new wallet, a cute passport holder, fancy new headphones for the plane, or even an overpriced neck pillow. Let me tell you, one of the most difficult tasks for me was packing post my winter break shopping bonanza.
And yet here I am. Sitting at the airport armed with a small carry on filled with select items that I determined too important to potentially lose to the world of unclaimed baggage and my thoughts. And to be honest, this is the most relaxed I have felt in weeks. I feel like making it to the airport was a huge step. Sure, when I get off of the plane I will be once again overwhelmed with a myriad of essential tasks, but for right now all I can do is sit and wait. Don’t get me wrong, I still feel nervous and anxious and excited and terrified. Nervous that I won’t make friends, anxious about all of the things I still need to do and excited about all of the adventures that wait for me. Oh yeah, plus the whole thing still feels kind of like a big fat joke. The fact that I’m going to be living in London, England for the next six months is only just beginning to settle in.