Living

A Long Way From Home

December 15, 2019

Before I moved out to Australia, I did have a lot of “what ifs” run through my mind. What if something happened to someone in my family and I’m across the world? However, I decided that I couldn’t plan my life around things that may or may not happen, otherwise I’d never do anything or move anywhere. Now that I live in Perth, I live even further from my hometown of Flint, Michigan. When I went home last it took me 3 flights to get back [Perth to Sydney, Sydney to Los Angeles, Los Angeles to Detroit] and the flying time is over 20 hours. So, I often get asked by others and clients if I have family or a partner in Australia, which I don’t – they also then ask don’t I miss home? Of course, I miss my family and friends! But, there’s so many ways to keep in touch now and I’ve actually been back to the US a good number of times since moving to Australia. A few things I’ve done that help me from getting homesick.

Celebrating the 4th with a beach BBQ in Darwin, Australia!

  • Facetiming or video chats
    • Video chatting on FaceTime or Facebook messenger!
    • For me, the time difference from Perth to Michigan is 12-13 hours, so it just means finding a time that works
    • I’ve actually gone wedding dress shopping with my best friend via video chat
  • Messaging/texting
    • If I send someone a message at whatever time, I might not hear back right away, but it’s always nice to wake up to some messages from family and friends
  • Having your next trip planned
    • I’ve been back to the US actually a number of times – many times for good friends’ weddings, but also unexpectedly for my Grandma’s funeral
    • My advice would be to have some $ saved up in case you need to take an unexpected trip home for whatever reason
  • Snail mail
    • Sometimes nothing is better than getting a card or package in the mail from friends or family in the US or sending a package out
  • Meeting other expats
    • Someone asked me if I tried to avoid meeting other Americans in Australia. I like having some American friends as it’s like having a bit of home without being there. If there are little things bugging me about Australia [or if I want to complain about how I miss Chipotle], they totally get it
  • Make friends from anywhere and make them celebrate your holidays with you!
    • I’ve had 4th of July celebrations, Friendsgiving, and a Cinco de Mayo party, with friends from all over – so much fun! I stayed with a friend’s family at Christmas one year that I didn’t go home for Christmas and this year will be having “Orphan Christmas” with a friend – I’ve put up a tree and some Christmas lights to try and make it feel a bit more Christmas-y even though it’s been 100+ degrees the past few days
  • If you need to go home, you need to go home – make it happen!
    • My Grandpa had a stroke last year in September and my parents began staying with him at night. I wanted a change from where I was at and wanted to spend the holidays at home and be with my family for a bit. I quit my jobs in Sydney and spent 2 months at home before coming back to Australia. I was home for a friend’s wedding and also got to spend Thanksgiving and Christmas at home with my family
  • Enjoy where you are!
    • Be grateful for the opportunity you have – I am living in a gorgeous place of the world! So although I do miss my friends and family, I am loving where I live and sharing in new experiences with new friends [whilst trying to convince my parents to come for a visit soon!]
    • I wish I could pick up all my friends and family and bring them here so they understand why I love it so much out here

FaceTiming with my best friend when she called to say she got engaged!

 

Thanksgiving at home in the US!

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