I have left a little piece of my heart in Rochester, NY

When I was leaving Denmark for my year abroad, I was wondering in the airplane how different life will be when I return home. After all, in a year a lot can change, right? Where will my friends be in life?How will they change? What jobs will they have? New hobbies? New relationships? Will they forget me? What about my city, will it change? And so on…

Saying good bye to my dear host family and friends I’ve met in Rochester was one of the hardest things I had to do in life. They have all become part of me, they’ve all become like family. When I looked at my room one last time and closed the door before leaving I knew that it was it… The year in Rochester is over and this crazy au pair experience has come to an end. Memories will always stay with me, but this journey is over and it is time to turn the page for the next chapter to start.

I have been home for less than two weeks…
Returning back was so exciting, seeing my family and friends again felt so good. It still feels like a dream that I am surrounded with people I’ve known almost my whole life. Crazy how in less than one day you are suddenly on the other side of the ocean.
It feels so good to be able to bike wherever I want, I don’t have to take the car anywhere, it feels so good to be able to walk to the nearest supermarket, it feels so good to eat my mom’s food and have dinner with my family every night like always.

But something that hit me was, that nothing has changed. Everything here is the same… It is like home had remained frozen during my time away. I love my family, friends and my city, but it is like I don’t fit in anymore and yet I do. Cause this is home… This is what I’ve missed when I was being homesick. The thing is, I have changed… I am not the same anymore… It sounds like the biggest cliché, but I finally understand this saying now.
I am yearning to try new things, go new places, and meet new people, but whenever I try to express that, words fall flat. I can’t talk about it to my au pair friends in Rochester, because they are still living their au pair life and I can’t explain it to my friends here, because they just ask me “aren’t you happy to be home? Irina it is good for you to be back, you can’t be a nanny forever”. I am very well aware of that and it really isn’t about being a nanny, it is about adjusting to this life here again. When you travel so far away for so long your perspective on things change. After a year of adventures, I am back to where I started – sitting in my childhood bedroom, anxious and jittery, waiting for my new life to start. I need to find a job to be able to move out and start my own life. Right now it feels like I am standing still and everyone around me are moving… and I, in a way have to start all over again… It is exciting and it is up to me which way to go and how to do it. It is like writing a book from the beginning, but at the same time it is scary. The feeling of not knowing what is going to happen scares me…

I have made a little to do list and I am taking babysteps, one day at the time and one thing at the time until I reach my goal – which right now is to get a job so I can be able to pursue my other dreams.

I am still in touch with everyone in USA and we text and send each other voice messages daily. It feels so good and it makes me very happy. The distance doesn’t really matter, cause no matter where we are in the world, we will always be connected.
I miss you all every day. ❤

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