Do I Stay Or Do I Go? : Uncertainty, Taking the Step, What I Leave Behind.


In less than two months I will be leaving Ireland for the better part of six months. From June to August I will be working in America, on a J1 visa. It's a huge step for me. I absolutely love Ireland, I can be quite shy. YET, I want to explore the world, meet new people, experience new cultures. I can freely admit I am obsessed with Instagram, documenting my life through photo. Capturing a photo before it's gone. I'm hoping I'll have tanned somewhat during those three months, but the likelihood is that I'll have erupted in freckles. After that, I'll be heading to Belgium for the first semester of college on my Erasmus. This means I'll be studying in a university in Ghent, Belgium. I've started to learn Dutch, but I'm not practicing it as frequently as I should, so whether or not it'll have any benefit to me is yet to be seen. It will be great to explore mainland Europe, The Netherlands is close by, Germany and France so who knows where I'll end up. 

This post is just going to be talking about home, what I'll miss and WHY I think it's a good thing for me to be pushing myself out of my comfort zone whether I like it or not. It's certainly inevitable, at this point, after months of preparation I can't really turn back now. You're not supposed to look back, you're meant to keep going, to quote a film called The Lovely Bones.

The photos above sum up a lot of what this semester has been about. Meeting new people, learning to be content with my own company, exploring the surrounding campus, immersing myself in different activities. That is what college should be, opening yourself to new experiences. I really hope I DO keep in contact with these people as I've had so much fun with them. I found also that I really connected with the more official parts of the university while on co-op in the Students Union and I think this bond will last throughout my years here. 

I found myself exploring the campus in different ways this year, with new people. There are still parts of the campus I tend to avoid, but Kilmurry Beach and the pontoon are places I have frequented with a number of different people. I've returned with old friends, exploring new places with them and for that I will be forever grateful. Life has a funny way of surprising you, I'll say. This semester has seen me connect with new people and reconnect with some of those that I was formerly distant from. I've been so so happy about this and I know all too well how lucky I am.

I am reluctant to leave University of Limerick's Students Union. I get along so well with the people working there and those who use the building. This semester has been among the more happier few months of my life in the past year. I've built up a treasure chest of memories that I will never ever forget. I came into this semester with fear, apprehension and anxiousness. While I can't say I'm completely 100% happy, I definitely was proved wrong in terms of how much fun I would have. 

Being in university has made me a very independent person and I could not imagine a life back in secondary school with so many restrictions. Onwards and upwards as people say. I've been given free rein to grow and develop as a person in my first two years at this university and I can say that I've changed a lot during my second year in college. I don't quite know what kind of person I am now, but I hope I'm a better one. God only knows what future I have before me in this place.

What can I say about leaving for America? I've been to the country before, just over six years ago when I was 14 years old and I don't think I appreciated as much as I could have. So part of me is very excited. However in conversation with my father I discussed how I am very wary of the country. American society can be very corrupt, close minded and cruel sometimes and this is what makes me suspicious. In saying that however it's the most powerful and influential country in world, so getting to live there for the better part of three months will be an experience of a lifetime. Prepare for an onslaught of photos on my instagram of the new landscape and what I come across on my travels.

But Ireland, Ireland, Ireland. The land of my birth. I swear my heart would be green if you took it from my chest, such is my pride for my country. I love it with all my heart and the thought of leaving it for a very long time scares me. I'll miss the accents, the people and YES even the weather, because it's all familiar to me. In the words of Gabrielle Aplin in the beautiful song called "Home", she says "Cause they say home is where your heart is set in stone". I think that's very true, no matter where you go or how long you stay away from home, it will always be part of you. 

By the time I write another post like this again I would say I'll be in America, I for one can't wait to see the photos I will have taken by then! I can't wait to see what kind of person I'll be when all this travelling over and I'm back in UL again.

All pictures are merely decorative and belong to their respective owners.

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  1. Awh girl, it's so hard to leave home. I just did it to live in Georgia (from Waterford!) with my husband and it's a game changer. You will love it. Embrace everything and try not to stress about missing home, your return will all the sweeter! Check out some of my posts about adjusting to the US and living in the South if you like :)

  2. Sorry I'm late in replying Amy! Thanks so much. The closer it gets, the more anxious I feel, but I know it'll be exciting once I'm there. I'm from Kilkenny myself. I can't wait to blog about new cultures and new experiences in the US! :) x


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