This word has been mentioned to me in terms of my decision making process, and due to the topic at hand, it is a good place to start. Throughout the last six to nine months I have been asked the question, are you afraid? Well yes, I am afraid.. I am going into a country that does not speak my language to live with a family I have not met in person yet, all by myself on a different continent.. so of course, I am a little afraid. When I answer like this people question me, well then why are you going? The answer is simply this, I do not see my fears as limitations (sometimes I even see them as challenges). Some of my biggest accomplishments and best memories were facing my biggest fears. So if not being afraid to face your fears is the definition of fearless, I guess that is what I am.

The feeling of being afraid did not last very long, it came and went throughout the six months I knew for sure I was going. The most difficult part was friends and family telling me that I should be afraid, and watching them be afraid for me.

I did not feel real nervousness until Alex, Helene, and Lexie were on there way to dinner to meet me and some of my family members for the first time. Suddenly I realized I had not even begun to think about how terrifying this moment would be. I am getting on a plane with this family TOMORROW, to move on the other side of the world. My overwhelming array of thoughts swarmed and a few sounded a bit like this “What if the Lexie doesn’t like me?” “How should I go about introducing myself and the other 10 other people I brought?” “Oh my, I am seriously going to be in a different country tomorrow” “WOW, I’m not even sure if I can pronounce their names correctly yet.”

After staring at the door and my heart skipping a beat with every person that walked in, they came from the back door and my sister was pointing them out before I even saw them. The dinner went great, and my Aunt Lisa and Uncle Ross helped calm the nerves of my family members. I got one last good night out, and suprisingly crashed right when I got tucked in.

Once I was halfway to the airport the next morning the excitment was in full swing, even when I realized I left all of my toiletries (makeup, facewash, straightener) at Aunt Lisa’s. It was not until I hugged my family goodbye and saw my sister wipe a tear that I realized I was going to miss them dearly. Colton ran up and gave me one more quick hug before I left.. This was the hardest part of the entire process, actually saying goodbye.

After regaining my confidence about what I was doing, delayed flights, a flight over the ocean, a drive through Germany and Belgium, and finally understanding why I should have slept on the plane.. I arrived in my new home.



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