As a girl in my 20′s, this time is crucial. While a lot of girls my age are concerned with finding a partner, planning their dream wedding and starting a family, that is the further thing from my mind. I see these prime years as an opportunity to follow my dreams, explore, travel, spend every day as I please, stay up until sunrise, and be as spontaneous as possible. When I am older I want to look back on these glorious years and smile to myself, with absolutely no regrets. This is why I made the decision to pack up my belongings and leave everything I know to make a trans-Atlantic move to Berlin, Germany.
Although I moved to the US when I was 10 years old, I definitely consider myself American. I went through all the rites of passage: winning middle school trophies, passing driver’s ed, getting a license, going to prom, attending football games, graduating from college, etc. After graduation the inevitable “NOW WHAT?” question surfaced. Every conversation I had somehow turned into “So now what are you going to do?” The truth was, I had absolutely no idea.
Most of my grad school classmates started working right after graduation. But I just couldn’t picture myself following that same path. After 23 years of school, the world was my oyster. I was finally free! I turned down several offers from local companies, which no one could understand. But I just could not accept to settle down in the same city I grew up in. I knew there was more. I wanted to see the world, experience it, learn, grow, get a better understanding of others, and myself.
I was determined to make it happen. I spent hours online researching and sending my resume out everywhere. I purposely avoided any job or relationship commitments to make sure I had the flexibility to pack up and move abroad at a moments’ notice.
Finally, the months of worrying, pursuing, applying and networking paid off. I got the opportunity of my dreams: an offer to work for an international events and media agency in Berlin. I signed the offer with no hesitation, it was such an exciting thought to move to Europe, meet tons of new people, discover a whole new scene and work in a dynamic industry.
My work start date arrived faster than I anticipated. Before I knew it I was down to my last few days in beautiful, sunny Florida. Reality sunk in. I was entering a new life, moving to a city I barely knew, where I didn’t speak the language and had no friends to fall back on. I was petrified.
I hate to admit that I did look back and hesitate those last few seconds before boarding the plane. I was saying goodbye to a comfortable, easy life, with no certainty that once I returned it would be the same. However, I choose to get on my flight that day. Making a big life change is always scary, but what scares me even more is regret.
As the plane doors closed behind me, thus began the start of my adventure: the bravest, craziest, most exciting thing I’ve ever done.