Wow, I can’t believe how much time has passed since I last wrote. I also can’t believe how close to being done with this experience I am, it’s an odd feeling that I’m having trouble describing. I can say that I am greatly looking forward to seeing how much living abroad has changed my perspectives and myself as a whole. I don’t feel I’ve changed much, but I also feel like I’ve changed so much I’ve become a different person. Again, it’s an odd feeling and an answer I won’t get until I re enter the life I left when I got on that plane three and half months ago. The only clear emotions I have right now are excitement and anxiety; an appropriate combination.
It is truly astonishing how much you discover about yourself when you study abroad. I had heard and read many stories about this beforehand coming to China, but it is truly something you have to experience to understand. This is where my excitement is rooted. My anxiety comes from the impending reverse culture shock I will undoubtedly have to face. One important thing I’ve learned is culture shock effects everyone differently. At no point during my time here did I feel so overwhelmed by homesickness that I wanted to give. No, instead I felt a type of rage I had never experienced prior. It was frightening how angry I would get at times; being in a foreign country made it hard to express how I was truly feeling. This only made things worse, and things stayed worse for longer than I care to admit. But through a lot of prayer and whining to family and friends, I was able to work through my issues and get back into the swing of things.
Now here I am, merely weeks from boarding another plane and leaving a part myself here in China. I am not leaving the way I came and I am happy about that reality. I’m definitely ready to go home but China will always be part of my life and has a place in my future.