Courage Is Leaving Your Home For The Second Time
Ariane, 23, London.
When I left my home country I fought a whole package of fears alongside the biggest one that was emigrating itself. Among those fears: living alone, making new friends, getting a job, speaking a foreign language, adapting to a new culture, sharing my music, going to college and so many more.
That was two years ago and just as those fears had been faced and I had advanced to new and better things, my deepest, darkest fears arose.
I was working somewhere I hated and living in a horrible place. I was no longer studying so my social life had been affected. I fell into depression. The only good thing was that I now had time so I could fly home and get away for the winter. There was nothing attaching me to the UK at the moment, so I could just do it, I could take a break.
I went to Venezuela where the sun shines and my family is, where the sky is blue and you can let go of all your blueness. I hadn’t seen my family in two years and it just seemed right to be surrounded by them when I needed to let go of all my sadness.
I stayed three months knowing that I had a return ticket to London. But I didn’t want to go back when I could be home, back in the places where I had been happy my whole life.
Depression hits you in many ways, and I began to feel too many awful things and started having more and more frequent panic attacks as the return date approached.
Therapy was helping, I was learning that I have to listen to my emotions but not let them control my decisions. I learned that I had the power within myself.
But I feared every minute that once I returned things would be as I left them and I would have to face my anxieties and fears -this time without the option of going back to Venezuela.
The week before I returned, my panic grew and grew. My mom helped me, giving me one of those mom speeches that always work, and I felt good on that last day. Until a few hours before departure I realized:
"I don’t want to take that plane"
I knew I had to go back to the UK because all my things were still on the other side of the ocean. I don’t want to take that plane. But I had to, not just because I had the ticket, or because I had projects back there that I wanted to do, but because it was a fear I had to face. However, things aren’t really under your control when you have panic attacks. Things are just ugly. I don’t want to take that plane.
But I had to go. As I was flying away from home for the second time, I felt refreshed by my experiences from those months in Venezuela, but had no clue how I would feel when I hit land again. I’d be alone with my panic attacks.
I was so afraid, but I have had so many huge opportunities since I arrived back in London. So many things that I wasn’t able to do before, experiences that I hadn’t take advantage of.
I feel so much better.
The weight of my fears is gone, my depression is too. Three days after I came back to the city, I already felt more adapted and comfortable.
Taking that plane was the best decision I’ve ever made. Glad my fears weren't strong enough to hold me back and lead me to the comfortable path I thought I needed.
Written by Rebeca Hernandez