I have been on the move since the age of 8. My globe-trotting adventure started with my parents as Immigrants. Since then, I have lived on 2 continents, in 4 countries and made a home in 8 cities. I have been an immigrant, a cross-cultural kid, a re-pat and currently, I am an expat. Growing up in between cultures and countries, I discovered the advantages and challenges of this multicultural world we live in. I have learned to adapt, to grieve losses, to welcome the unfamiliar and the unknown. I have experienced profound nostalgia and have had to re-invent myself a few times along the way.
Every move has taught me something new and made me realize that as global citizens we have an abundance of opportunities and it is up to us to decide how we take on each relocation.
My international experiences have shaped me into the person I am today.
Just when I thought I was planting my roots, I met my husband and once again I packed up my life in boxes and set off to live the happily ever after in the land of the Vikings and Hygge. In Denmark, I have lived on Fyn, in Jylland, and now in Nordsjælland.
I have a solid understanding of the similarities and differences Denmark as a country can offer to Internationals. I have been through all the cultural adjustment phases (more than once), I have been a student, unemployed, employed, a stay at home Mom and self-employed.
Being an International changes who you are, it allows you to live a life that is filled with rich experiences, various cultures, languages, climates, communities, surroundings, ups and downs, culture shock, reverse culture shock, feeling alone, belonging to enthusiastic groups, grieving the loss of the “old” you and reinventing yourself. Change is constant and as difficult it may be to surrender to it at times, it is a positive part of life.
Home for many Internationals becomes a memory, a nostalgic trip for the holidays. Very often home takes on a new meaning, it is built around the closest family, the communities – it is all about the PEOPLE. We have our differences but overall, we have more in common than we think. Transitioning is challenging but by being aware, acknowledging and working together to take action we can make a difference.