So your time abroad is coming to an end, and soon you will return to the comfort of your own bed and the warmth of your family and friends back in the US. While you can pretty much guarantee that Chipotle burrito you have been craving will taste as great as you remembered, expect to find that not everything will be exactly as you last left it. We forget sometimes that when we step away to travel and explore, life at home doesn’t stop, and sometimes, this can come as a surprise to us when we reaclimate into our normal lives. We call this Reverse Culture Shock.
You just may find yourself on the outside of a new inside joke amongst your friends or perhaps you will find that you are way behind on the latest gossip and are struggling to keep up with loved ones’ personal lives. These little things can make us feel slightly alienated when we return home, especially in the first few weeks as you will be playing catch up on what you missed out on while away. The good news, it’s normal, and it gets easier over time. So what’s the best cure? Hop on the phone with your best pals from study abroad and talk about your experiences returning home. You will have very relatable tales to share. And just remember, your friends and family still love you just the same, and while it takes some time to re-adjust, soon, it’ll be like you never left.
As I (sadly) finish up my final days in Florence, I’ve been reflecting on the lessons I’ve learned and the memories I’ve