Travel Log 2:“Rites of Separation: Looking Behind and Looking Ahead: Expecting and Accepting the Unexpected” – Orange County, New York

“A journey of a thousand miles belongs with one single step” by Lao Tzu was the quote that I chose to share with my family. As it gets closer to my departure, I realized its time to take my first step of my journey. I believe that the first step of any journey is saying goodbye to what/who you are leaving behind.

Three days before my departure, I sat my family down in my back porch to read them my letter of separation that I had been working on. I was not anxious to read this letter because I knew that I had all the support from my family that I could ever need. My mom was the one who pushed me to go abroad because she knew that I was capable of it. My dad constantly reminded me how jealous he was of my “four month vacation”. My brother was just happy to get me out of the house again so he could have the television all to himself, even though I knew he would secretly miss me.

I never really have experienced the emotion of “missing” some one. Of course, I love my family and friends, but I am one who is always up for new experiences. Saying goodbye to my best friend, Christi, was the hardest goodbye but it was less difficult knowing that she would be visiting me in two short months. I will not be seeing my family unfortunately but my parents have raised me to be strong and to live in the moment. It is easy to get caught up in what you are missing and not realize what is in front of your eyes.

My letter of separation went smoothly with my family. My younger brother joked by saying it was the best letter he’s ever heard. Neither my mom nor dad cried because they said they were too proud of me to be sad. I am sure once I get on the plane, the tears will fall, but until then it is nothing but happiness and excitement for the trip that I am about to embark on. I am ready to enter the next step of my Rites of Passage which is the liminal phase. I am ready to meet my fellow “liminoids” and go on this amazing journey with them.

During these next four months I am hoping for a successful educational abroad experience. This experience means something different to every study abroad student. To me, it means finally being able to relax. I have lived my short twenty years of life with constant stress and anxiety. My parents have never had to push me to be successful because I always pushed myself. This reflected positively on my grades but negatively on my well-being. I unfortunately push myself too hard. I am hoping that Australia will teach me how to be less uptight and learn how to relax while enjoying the moment. I am hoping to take advantage of every moment presented too me. I want to learn to only think about the present instead of always planning for the future. I have worked this past semester on conquering my academic anxiety and I can proudly say that I have found a way to rid it from my life for good. I will be able to measure my success of studying abroad by hopefully the total lack of anxiety in my life.

I chose this picture to represent the new and the old of my life. Both Bond University and Quinnipiac University will now forever be a part of my identity. Quinnipiac was my first home and will forever be my home, but I am ready to now let Bond be my home as well. I love Quinnipiac and everything that is has given to me but I am ready to see what Bond University has to offer.fullsizerender-2

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