8.30.2013

Ashley's Steps for Getting Over Reverse Culture Shock (Step 2)



Continuning the series on how I've been getting over the reentry process into the United States...

2. Perspective

As I wrote about a few days ago, my friend's mom died. I hate that it takes something like death to give us a proper kick in the ass, but man...that's what it took for me. I realized how silly I was being to miss a city, a thing that still exists and I can still visit. I haven't lost anything really, I've just gained an experience--one that was invaluable and can't be taken away. 

I won't see my mom's friend again. At least not in this life. It's more final, and much more serious than me being mopey over a city. 

I figured out that I was fantasizing about London. But truth is, I had a hard time adjusting there too. I had many a boring night (probably during those bad winter months) watching TV marathons, just like I did in America. I had sad moments, moments of extreme homesickness in where I felt lethargic and depressed. Life was not all roses and rainbows while abroad, so I've learned that I shouldn't paint that inaccurate picture.

Make sure that while you are getting over reverse culture shock you keep a little perspective. You haven't lost something, you've gained something grand. There's nowhere else to go but forward. 

4 comments:

  1. YES. Yes to this whole post and your new perspectives! I thought about these things too but didn't know how to convey them without sounding like a bitch! ;) Glad you are adjusting to your new normal!

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  2. I think it's normal to romanticise about a place you loved but only spent a bit of your life there, I do the same about the US. It's just a whole other way of life.

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  3. I'm sorry about your mom's friend :( Especially at this age where we still feel invincible it's always a complete shock to actually lose someone.

    As for your reverse culture shock, I studied Communications in college and this is an actual thing *every one* goes through when traveling, haha. You come home and all of a sudden THIS culture is weird and lame, and you miss the one you left behind. In January I went to go traveling through India for two months, and while there I was in total adventure mode but also totally stressed, and tired, and missing a clean toilet and a real bed, haha. But then when I got home i was all, UGH chicago is dumb, I wish I was walking dusty desert streets. It just takes time :) But you're so right, it definitely helps if you don't over fantasize your stay there- there definitely were downs with the ups!

    xo marlen
    Messages on a Napkin

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  4. I don't think it's silly at all. London became a part of who you are.

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