As I smash out my last blog entry, I sit in the comfort of my own home once more. In fact, it’s already been two weeks since I’ve left Australian soil.
I bid goodbye to its hot Christmas in the summer and welcome back a California winter. I know, I know — “winter” as friends from the Midwest, east coast and Europe would then toss back to me.
“But after living in a constant state of figuring things out on the go, I’ve learned to feel more comfortable in the presence of uncertainty”
To wrap up my feelings about what the last four months have taught me: I am grateful, I am humbled and I am confident.
I am grateful for all the memories and lessons I’m bringing back from Perth. I remember that it takes getting through the rough times to make the exciting portions of my trip even more special. So after everything that has happened — the good times and the bad times alike — gratitude helps me see through it all and I learn to appreciate my experience in its entirety.
I am also humbled as I was reminded of my privileges as well as individuality, not just on a personal level but on a community-wide scale too. In both subtle and vivid ways, I saw how the world is truly so much bigger than we ever perceive it to be. This understanding has given me a refreshed mindset to rearrange my priorities in light of “the bigger picture” of myself and of the world around me.
Last but not least, I am more confident now. It feels like a good time to realize this as I prepare to graduate in May. After graduation, who knows what’s next? Only having a faint idea of what I might be up to, it’s still nothing concrete and not the least bit reassuring. But after living in a constant state of figuring things out on the go, I’ve learned to feel more comfortable in the presence of uncertainty.
And now I sit here at home, wondering how any of the past four months is even real.
So, here’s my goodbye-for-now to Australia. I am so happy I chose to take a leap of faith this time last year, when I decided to see what a semester abroad would do for me. I’ll be back for you one day, Perth!
To anyone who has followed the bits and pieces of my journey, thank you! It’s been a pleasure sharing this crazy adventure of mine.
Now, I’m off to find another one!
Kat Hidalgo is a fourth-year kinesiology (physical therapy emphasis) major. She studied at Murdoch University in Perth, Australia for the fall semester.