Why is it such a big deal? You might wondering. Yourself or your friend might have left abroad. It was not a thing, even ending up at the other half of the world. So why making so much noise for heading to a country three hours from home, where I already have friends and family and know a bit of the language?
I grew up in a more or less conservative family. I am the youngest out of three kids. My brother is 10 years older than me and my sister 7 years older. I was a quite waited baby and turned out to be overprotected ever since. Because of our beliefs, culture and mostly our education we are all quite close. Way too much. There is no day without calling my sister or chatting with my brother. No week without seeing my niece and nephews. And not a weekend without eating at the same table with them all.
My mom and I have that very intrusive relationship. We don’t know about tabous, we don’t have any secrets, we rely a lot on a each other. Sometimes it is overwhelming not having boundary. My sister is my second mom, she changed me, fed me, comfort me every time it was needed. She spoiled me when it was not rational and defend me even if I was wrong. She takes a good care of me. Even when she got her own kids, I remained to her the eldest.
My dad is the one who knew I was different first I guess. By different I mean a dreamer, a creative, a traveler. He understands that I have that deep need to go around, see by myself, no matter what. Some fathers expect their girls to have a stable situation, have a good marriage, educate their kids well at the youngest age. Mine asks me to live and love. My brother is my mentor. Engineer from a prestigious school, he made it all right, However, we tend to have very different paths. As he never had the opportunity to travel or socialize ( Face it bro!), he encourages me to be bolder.
Bolder than him, and bolder than a girl should be in our community minds. I proceed behind their backs, without telling them about the evolution of the project. And when it was official, I dropped the bomb.
I let you imagine what was their reaction when I told them I was leaving for the next semester. I was talking about moving for such long time that they didn’t trust me first, didn’t realized that this time was happening.
My sister and my mom where mad and sad at the time. They didn’t understand why. What I was running away from? Didn’t they gave me everything? Where they such a bad company? Why didn’t I love them as much as they do? Didn’t have enough freedom? What did they have to change to make me stay?
My boys stood for me, they understood that I was not running away from home but running after some experience. 21 was the good time. Everything was thought and set. I was not throwing myself in the complete unknown, or a risky situation. They were proud and supportive, everything I needed to hear after all of those demanding months of application and wait.
It is a small adventure for a lot, but the greatest one for me. As mature as I can be, this felt like the first step to a new life, and somehow hard life. I was challenging myself for real.
Be free and grateful,
149” Because you care.