Monday, March 10, 2014

Halfway Point

Hey all!

It took everything in me to not be super nerdy and name this post 'Halfway There' in a slight reference to Livin' On a Prayer' by Bon Jovi and put the lyrics here. But then I'd have the song stuck in my head forever. As a do now... hopefully you do to. Anyway, back on topic and onto the post.


It's hard to believe that I've already been here in London for over two months! It really still feels like yesterday that I landed in Heathrow to begin my journey. At the same time, I feel like I've been here long enough that I'm a true Londoner, even if it has only been a few months.

I've been ill this past week so I've stayed in to do some work and try to get better. At the same time, it has also given me a lot of time to reflect on my time here.

Before coming, London was all I could talk about. Even before I was officially accepted, I was constantly talking about it to the point I probably annoyed those around me. But all of my excitement seemed to mask my nerves. The day before I left I confessed to my sister that I was secretly terrified that my semester abroad wouldn't live up to my expectations. That I'd built up this fantasy in my head that the real thing could never possibly live up to. She helped to reassure me that it was just nerves and that I would have the time of my life. As much as I hate to admit, she was 100% right.

A big part of my nerves came from my history with depression and anxiety, particularly my social anxiety. I have never been good at making friends and still struggle with it to this day. And going to a country where I knew no one was absolutely terrifying. I was worried I wouldn't get on with the people in my program, my flat mates, my classes, you get the point. So there was a part of me that worried that I would become I complete hermit, like I used to be. I would do no exploring and simply go to my classes, get food, and hang out in my room. This was the exact opposite of what I wanted. Hello, I'm on a completely different continent, let alone country!

Fortunately, that hasn't been the case. I've done some exploring and done a little bit of traveling, more of that will hopefully come during spring break when I have the whole month of April off. I am a little wary about traveling to countries where I don't know any of the language, but oh well. Part of my wishes I could forget about the school part of study abroad and just travel and explore. Learning and exploring new things could easily fill up my time. I'm one of those people that is just fascinated by things unknown to me.

Probably one of the biggest things that has happened in my time here is that I have learned a tremendous amount about myself. In just a few short months I have learned more about myself than I have in years. I was worried about my depression rearing it's ugly head again in horrible ways. Going back to that time period is something I never want to do as falling back into that deep hole is a scary enough thought. It's truly thrilling to me that it hasn't. And my anxiety hasn't caused me too much trouble. I still have to deal with my social anxiety and the fact that I am horrible at making friends, but that is something that I can deal with, with relative ease. As in, it doesn't make me upset, anymore that is. Then there is the fact that my family is thousands of miles away and although I miss them dearly, it's a great feeling knowing I can manage on my own in a foreign city. Leaving home for Penn State was one thing, I'm only a few hours drive away, London is a totally different story. Even though I still rely on my parents for a few things, it's a step in the right direction. I'm a big girl now! (Jokes, I like jokes).

Because Harry Potter is life and deserves to be on my blog because, Harry Potter.

That's all for now! If there is anything I haven't talked about involving London, etc. that you are interested in, let me know!

Until next time my friends.


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