Málaga

Feel the Fear and Move Forward: Preparing to Study in Spain

Julia Chernicky is a student at the University of Pittsburgh and an ISA Featured Blogger. Julia is currently studying abroad with ISA in Málaga, Spain.

administrative_map_of_spain

Málaga is at the southern point of Spain in Andalucía (Image from The Map Shop)

It is fun to think about where we will be in a year, 10 years, 30 years, 50 years. Who knows? In only two short weeks, however, I can say for certain that I will be on a plane destined for Spain. At times I think “Let’s get this party started!” Then, a bit later, I think “whoa, I have a list of people I do not know, will stay with a random family’s home that I will share for a few months, will attend a school I am unfamiliar with, and will have to communicate using a language I do not speak. Oh and I have to fit my closet into a 25-inch suitcase. What am I doing?” I would be lying if I said I was not scared, terrified really. But if you ask me in person how I feel, I will just reply that I’m excited. “Excited” is a good blanket term for all the emotions I am feeling right now.

I expect every student that goes abroad has this same feeling of anxiety; it is fear of the unknown. I realize it is not a bad thing. The nervous fear tells me that I have found my limits; I have only gone this far before. I have been abroad before but only with my family. Now I am going on my own and facing a new challenge. I am pushing my boundaries, literally and figuratively. And a year from now, struggling with nostalgia, I will be able to say, “This time last year, I was just getting ready to leave.”

“If we don’t change, we don’t grow. If we don’t grow, we are not really living. Growth demands a temporary surrender of security.” – Gail Sheehy

7 replies »

  1. I’m having these feelings now and I’m not even going any time soon. I hope to in a few years though. But on the bright side, you’re fear is shaping you into a new person. You’re taking a leap outside your comfort zone and that inside is a remarkable thing. I bid you luck into you’re new journey and I wish you safe travels.
    -amber

    Like

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