So, as I think back over these 4 months I still cannot figure out where the time went. I knew that I would love the Netherlands but I had no idea how attached I would get. There were times I felt miserable but in hindsight is wasn’t because of the place it was because of circumstances. For example, Dutch class and midterms but come on I would have been miserable because of that regardless of where I was located in the world. Some things I’m not going to miss about the Netherlands (more so Europe in general) is how without fail a conversation about how much America sucks will arise, paying for public restrooms, no ice or free refills, narrower selection on menus, stores closing at 6 pm, not understanding anything anyone is saying, and the exchange rate from dollar to euro. But, if I could transport my sister, parents, dog and friends here I’d be set at least for another year. I love it that much. Their attitude towards life is something I’m going to carry with me when I get back. They work hard to play hard. They enjoy spending time with family and friends and make it a priority to do so. I think the “American dream” gets in the way of that sometimes. We HAVE TO enjoy what we have while we have it. When it’s nice out they sit outside reading, drinking tea and chatting. What could be better? Weekend trips to the beach or another town (or country), shopping breaks in the middle of the day, gah I’m going to miss it here! I prefer the American way of higher education but that’s most likely because it’s what I’m used to. I’m also probably pretty biased because I love Peace College so much. I’m not sure what my life holds for me when I get back to North Carolina but what I was doing before isn’t going to cut it. I’m going to be a college graduate in less than a week. That’s almost hard for me to believe. If you knew me in high school you know I didn’t take school very seriously. But, the past 4 years I have made a complete transformation. 2010 is a terrible representation of who I am. I was depressed after my break up with my boyfriend of 3.5 years and I became someone I don’t think anyone liked including me. I finally feel myself again. I’m in tears as I write this because it feels so freeing. This is the exact reason I came here. Last semester I made an attempt to ‘get better.’ I made new friends and started doing new things but it wasn’t me and therefore it didn’t work. I don’t know what I’m going to do when I get home. I know I’m going to get a job, place to live, etc but other than that I’m starting over. I had built my life around being with someone who didn’t end up doing the same for me. So, last year I was confused. What was I supposed to now? I still don’t know but my attitude is entirely different about it now. It’s okay not to know. I’m so happy that no matter what happens I know it will be okay. For those of you who I met while in the Netherlands- thank you. Thank you for everything. Thank you for being my friends, thank you for all the fun times, thank you for teaching me it’s okay to be myself and it’s okay to except people exactly as they are. I don’t have to agree with everything everyone does but I should love them regardless. I’m a human being so sometimes that’s hard but it’s gotten easier here. And, for those of you back in the states I can’t thank you enough for all you’ve done. To my parents and family who helped me get here financially I’m forever grateful. All of you who made an effort to keep in touch with me it means more than you know. You’d be surprised how many people made little to no effort to even talk to me via Facebook. I’m excited about getting back and writing a new chapter in my life. I’m sad to leave. Thursday is going to be a hard day. Not only am I deathly afraid of flying but I have to say goodbye to one of the best experiences I’ll ever have and some of the best people I’ve ever met. If any of you ever want a beach vacation I am from one of the best beaches in the US!
Someone said to me “you guys will never see each other again” but for some reason I think they’re wrong.