Before and during my exchange year, the question “why?” came up a lot. To be completely honest, I never really knew. I just wanted to, that was the only reason I could think of. Now that I’m back, I could come up with a lot of reasons why someone should go on exchange.
First of all, you will find yourself. Before I went on exchange, I didn’t really know what I wanted to do and where I wanted to go next. While I was in America, I was on my own, and I had to work to get things done. There was no way for me to just ask my parents to do everything for me, so I was forced to grow up. You have to be though to get through an exchange year because it is harder than you might expect, but it is so worth it.
In addition to the way you will develop yourself, you will establish a whole different relationship with the people you leave behind. You will find out who are in your corner and you will appreciate the things you leave behind more. Like they say, you don’t really know what you have, until it’s gone.
I came home thinking that I would have nobody and that my friends would have forgotten about me already, but then they invited me to dinner, and to a birthday, and it was just as if I had never been gone, and that was the greatest feeling in the world.
The best thing that I got out of my exchange year, are the friends and family I gained. I might not see them everyday and I know it’s very possible that I won’t see them again for a very long time to come, but I know they’ll always be there, and that’s the best feeling in the world.
Going on exchange is hard. It may seem impossible and I can’t tell you how many times I almost picked up the phone to tell EF I was going home. But I fought my way through it, and looking back, it was the greatest year of my life and I would not change one thing about it.