One Month In: A Reflection

I never knew I could do or learn so much in one month.

13 countries.

Czech Republic. Slovakia. Austria. Hungary. Serbia. Bosnia and Herzegovina. Croatia. Montenegro. Kosovo. Macedonia. Albania. Greece. Malta.

Over 30 cities/towns/villages.

3,500 plus miles travelled.

Countless new friends from around the world.

It has been indescribable. I have learned so much about the world around me. More than any history class or book has ever even begun to teach. From Hungarian culture to Srebrenica, the siege of Sarajevo to Maltese history, the lessons have been vast. 

My learning and development hasn’t just been historical or cultural, but also personal.

I’ve re-learned how to listen to my body and soul so I can try to better fulfill my needs and desires.

I’ve rekindled my love for reading – and not just reading for a paper or a class, but to truly appreciate the power that words and stories can have.

I’ve begun to understand bad habits and tendencies of mine, allowing room for me to focus on changing them.

I've submitted my dissertation, marking the completion of my Master's degree.

I’ve started to truly discover the power and agency I have.

I’ve had opportunities to question, evaluate, and challenge my values and beliefs, making me stronger in the process.

I’ve expanded the boundaries of my comfort zone.

I’ve tried new things that I never thought I would try before.

I’ve realised that I love swimming and being in the water and that the only thing that used to make me hate it was discomfort and self-consciousness about my body.

I’ve felt defeated and I’ve felt accomplished. Scared and fearless. Nervous and calm.

I've found new ways to conceptualise home when my current "home" is nothing more than a permanent address that's over 5,000 miles away.

I’ve laughed, I’ve cried, I’ve broken down, I’ve found strength, hope, and joy.

It hasn’t been easy and it hasn’t always been fun. But it’s been a powerful and meaningful month that I will always cherish.

I can’t even imagine what might be in store for me in the upcoming months as I continue onward, but I am looking forward to the surprises.