(a more personal post!…in English only)
This year has been huge for me. Due to said hugeness, I struggled to update this blog on a monthly basis.
“So, what happened?” You may ask.
I became French.
Not in the literal sense, I mean, I don’t have French citizenship or anything.
I got a life. A real, healthy, financially-independent, respectable life. In France.
I became an adult…in Europe.
Year one was all about adjusting, sharing, making friends with non-New Yorkers (which was more shocking than I had imagined considering how multicultural and multilingual my NYC amigo pool was!), following expat blogs, traveling around Europe…and of course, becoming familiar with various supermarkets, local shops, green markets, butchers and boulangeries like nobody’s business. I wouldn’t say learning because that will never stop.
By year two I was making friends en français y en español, attending fabulous parties and weddings (especially this fantastic, unforgettable one!), exhibiting my art, exploring new continents, Seeing for real, trying to get new visa/business stuff sorted…and once that was done (ya’ know, the well-known French admin. waiting game mixed in with some musical chairs!) I was onto the über-challenging job hunt.
Keep in mind that if you are unable to face your deepest fears and grow as a person you may unhealthily prolong where you were at year one. I’ve personally witnessed ambitious previously-successful expats turned boring, delusional housewives.
AND I finally scored a solo show. AND, drum roll please…I landed a job. Good thing because my old New York clothes were barely wearable…and college loans were no longer forbearable*!
When you finally achieve a proper, productive, independent life in your new country, there is another important process with your bump in self-esteem and knowledge: shedding and foresight. Time is money and organization is key; especially when working numerous jobs. I cut-out all that is unnecessary, especially crappy, dead-end relationships and other activities that lead nowhere positive. I sent more messages and Skype calls to my solid friends in other cities, and tried my best to make RDV’s with my carefully selected, quality friends in Grenoble with the limited free time I had. And, of course, I made time for my chéri – although that’s nothing new! He’s the sun in my sky after all. Finding balance has become my new challenge; it takes some time to get it right.
Easy peasy? No way. I’ve never worked so hard in my life. Not even when I went to college full time + waited tables until 4am + sleepless nights taking in the NYC party scene in college.
Satisfied? Completely! And beyond Thankful to a few people in particular who helped me get to where I am today.
They know who they are.
With all the blood, sweat and tears that went into 2013, I’m ready to close it, put a sparkly cat sticker on top of it, and begin 2014!
Thanks to all my readers for following my adventures and discoveries through my blog and Facebook page.
*made it up!