Life is journey. A very interesting one but sometimes it can be very challenging and lonesome. Even the smartest and most goal oriented among us have periods that they feel lost and need to redirect themselves. When you’re living abroad life can be even more demanding and there are no friends of family to share doubt and help to find this new direction in life. You are out of your comfort zone and even simple things like shopping can become stressful events. Without any friends and family to rely on it can be an exhausting period. You need to be the mom, but also the aunty, the grandmother, the friend, the cook, the entertainer, the coach. Sometimes even the ‘father’ if daddy is working long hours. Women tend to place high expectations on themselves. It is not unusual to act as if everything is fine but feel anxious and depressed underneath. Episodes of stress can even lead to chronic depression.
If you experience grief and negativity, share these feelings and get some support. Please don’t fall in the trap of believing that it is only you! Countless expats are or have experienced something similar to what you are experiencing, even though your journey is unique. I have been there too! I know how complex it can be to move to an unknown country and culture. It is a period of discovery and growth (full of fun and excitement) but also a period of mourning –having to leave behind your loved ones and also the roles you had in your former life. Constantly being out of your comfort zone stretches you but consumes a lot of energy.
It is definitely not the most easy path, but living abroad can be extremely rewarding. You have the opportunity to enrich yourself, maybe even to ‘reinvent’ yourself, and to design the life you love. Building a meaningful future, step-by-step. First within yourself and then in the surroundings…
I hope to see you soon!