Coping with the reality that I was leaving in a week was hard. I never was a person to really express my emotions or how I was feeling so when my parents and close friends could see how leaving was affecting me, I knew it was going to be an adjustment. I had already shared my separation letter with my parents when I went home for a weekend before school was over so I knew I had to share it with my best and closest friend, Christina. In life, I feel that we all have that one friend that completely understands you inside and out without a single negative judgment in their minds; this friend would be Christina in my life. We have been inseparable friends since our freshman year of high school and I know being away from her for 4 months was going to be strange.
When I met up with Christina to share my separation letter, she surprised me with an “Ireland Going Away” care package. It had a journal, a few books, snacks, and other essentials to traveling abroad. We sat down and I explained the background information regarding the class and the purpose of the letter. She understood and ultimately loved the overall idea of the letter. I explained the different Rites of Passage phases and how the second phase, Liminality, was going to be the main issue for me. I told her that in order for me to let go and experience this beautiful country, I was going to need her to ignore me when I complain about how much I miss home.
I went for a walk around the center of my town by myself to really experience where I grew up to try to create some sort of comparison to Ireland by December and to also add to my memoir project at the end of this semester. What I saw was a lot of people that I knew from the day I was born. I also saw a lot of tourists trying to find their way around and I found myself almost immediately judging them but then I realized that I would be placed in their shoes in less than a week. A quote by Ralph Waldo Emerson that really stuck to me as I was on social media one day was “Life is a journey, not a destination.” I love this quote because I find that I tend to spend too much time worrying about the small “what ifs” and the future too much without really enjoying the present moment. I think Ireland will be a great time for me to create my own
journey and adventures and to take in every single moment.