Some of Us Took Billy Joel’s “Moving Out” Too Seriously

I knew that I would never be the type of person to stay in my hometown forever.

You know, the type of people that are content growing up, going to school at every stage, working, living, buying a home (back when you could actually fathom owning a house one day), and eventually dying in that same town.

Yeah, that has never been me.

I knew that I would move, that I would, well, escape. 

However, if you told me that I’d be living and studying in Ireland, honestly I would’ve laughed.

But, laugh all I want because here I am.

For the next year, I’m earning my Bachelors of (Hons) Business in Marketing, at an Irish university, only about an hour’s car ride away from Dublin.

I’m almost a month into living here, so the initial “holy shit this is actually my life” is much more subdued, although it hasn’t faded completely.

This has been the most intense move of my life, adjusting to new currencies, a new timezone, new social norms and customs, and little things that you don’t think of being altered and changed. It’s not good, it’s not bad, it’s just very different.

A lot of people asked me why I was doing this, why I was doing a year abroad when theoretically I could’ve stayed in Canada to complete my degree.

I’ve given the same rehearsed answer each time.

“Honestly it’s cheaper.”

“I only have to do one year, instead of 2 or 3 in Canada.”

“I was going to have to move either way, so why not Ireland?”

Granted, all of those are technically true, but do you want to know the true, honest answer as to why?

I’m searching for “home”. 

I’ve been searching for such a long time, and this felt like a good place to continue my search.

Home for me is not a physical place, it’s a feeling, an internal feeling.

I’m not looking for home in another person, I’m searching for a home within myself, within my life. A path, a journey, a sense of self-belonging. 

So yes, why not continue my education, where it’s cheaper and it’s shorter time spent in school than my peers, but as well, this is my opportunity to continue my search for my own belonging.

I think if anything, this year will give me further clarity on my needs, professionally and personally, a preparation for how I will take hold of my life finally and journey forward, in whatever direction that may be. 

And let’s face it, being in such close proximity to France, Italy, and Greece is not a hindrance within that journey. I mean, I’m not opposed to recreating “Mamma Mia”, or having a whole “Letters To Juliet” moment (I just realized those are both Amanda Seyfried movies…I’m putting it out into the universe right now, I do not want a “Drop Out” moment, thanks universe).

In all earnest, this year I know will be quite formative, however, yes I realize that in itself is a cliche for those who study abroad, but I’m trying not to be annoying about it, promise. 

I’ve poured all savings and all current finances into this, so I’m giving it my all (because I don’t really have the option not to).

So deep breath, and here we go. 

  • Emrys


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