I have officially been in Boston for over a month now and have a little less than that until I head back home to Salt Lake City. This has been my first experience leaving a bubble, something that may seem surprising to friends and family. While yes I went to college and yes I lived abroad in Australia for a year, I had close people nearby at all times. This has been my first all on your own, new girl in town experience.
The excitement of discovering a new city, making new friends, and immersing myself in an internship has been a whirlwind. This month flew by, but not without challenges. I found my eagerness to succeed and excel turn into fear of falling behind and stress that I hadn’t done enough during my college career. I went through some homesick or I guess friendsick moments and may have looked at a few weekend flight prices … then I remembered there were a million places to see right outside my door.
The classic things all twenty somethings feel when they embark in the real world was happening to me, and I didn’t know why. This isn’t what I expected when I boarded a plane for the summer. I mean I was only going on a 4 hour plane ride, not the 16 hours I’d done 2 years before. But here I am and I have to say, a month later it feels good.
I’m not saying it’s gotten any easier, but it’s taught me a few things.
Never turn down an opportunity: coming out here was scary and seemingly impossible, but it is so important to put yourself out there and embrace the scary.
Be you: starting a new internship with a whole new set of people can be intimidating, but going into day one knowing I belonged there and showing everyone who I am was so important. Don’t be shy. Everyone you meet is out there in the same scary abyss.
Embrace the lonely: sometimes it’s going to get lonely and that’s okay. I realized that as much as I love a good Netflix binge, I was missing the weekend shopping trips with my friends or late night study sessions. The reality is, that in a new city you are going to have some alone time, so learn to love it and make it fun. I made an effort to go out and try new experiences instead of just watching a show or Skyping my friends back home.
Somehow these unexpected downsides have really become the best things that could have happened. With graduation looming (only 2 semesters away) I know I will be changing my environment drastically and this trial run has made it a little less scary, and dare I say … a little more #exciting.