Sitting in the Rennes train station, waiting for my train to Paris that is already late, I’m surrounded by 4 seperate bags and what seems like close to double the amount of stuff I arrived with only four months back. It’s been an incredible journey and I feel overwhelmed with gratitude towards my host family, my program, and everyone in America who has thought of me, missed me, and given me words of encouragement and love while I’ve been away (let’s not stop that once I’m home shall we? I quite like it to be honest.).
And here I am again, waiting for my flight back to the states, and I couldn’t be more ready to get home. I’m leaving behind a beautiful country with amazing food, and some fantastic people; but I’m returning to my family, Wofford, and my team of supporters that really showed me how much they care and want what’s best for me. I’m newly empowered to go beyond my usual limits in everyday life, thanks language barrier. And every challenge I’ve faced, every time I said the wrong thing, forgotten a word, made a fool of myself, gotten my questions answered in English when I asked them in French, been told I speak “très bien français, had a real conversation with someone, understood something completely and read at a normal speed with good comprehension has made me stronger and more, well, me.
And with that dear readers, it’s time. It’s time to say goodbye to France and it’s time to say goodbye to my international blog. This lady in waiting is about to board. Safe and happy holidays to you all, I hope you enjoyed my intermittent musings from Europe. If you are a student thinking about going abroad, do it. There’s nothing you’ll wish you had done in college more, and nothing you’ll be more happy about once you’ve done it. I didn’t have the storybook time of my life, but I had so much fun, met some amazing people and learned a ton about myself in the process.