Leaving kind of sucks. You are running around trying to get your things together, say goodbye to people, coordinate travel plans… etc. Consequently, you either do something like 1) forget your socks 2) don’t get to say goodbye to a friend or family member, or 3) delete your travel itinerary from your email by accident. I, on this particular occasion, managed to do all three of these things, which, with a glass-half-full sort of attitude, can only be described as a miracle. I was able to buy some socks, and recover my itinerary email, so whatever. I didn’t, however, get to see my roommate Nick or a few other friends from New York.
Nick will be fine, although I’m sure there will be some separation anxiety after having shared a smelly 200 square foot dorm with me for two years. Regardless, this is just an example of the kind of thing that is typical for a college student about to go abroad. There are so many more people in your life now to keep in touch with, so many logistics to take care of, and all the while you are asking yourself one question: What the heck am I doing right now?
The answer is actually pretty simple. You are growing. The late David Bowie said, “If you feel safe in the area you’re working in, you’re not working in the right area. Always go a little further into the water than you feel you’re capable of being in.” That is the exact purpose of a trip abroad, or at least my trip to Auckland. Before you leave, there are so many distractions that can cloud the real reason that you made the decision to leave in the first place. Just remember, after you leave, none of it matters. You will have exactly the kind of semester that you pictured in your head originally if you make decisions accordingly. The best advice I can give is rip that goodbye band-aid off and go pursue your desired reality.