Friday, July 13, 2012

Reflecting, but this time on American Soil.

So I told myself I'd keep this blog going for as long as I want to, or as long as I need to. In case you didn't know, I'm home now. Safe and sound in the United States. I can't lie in my blog and say everything's going well, but it's going as well as it could be. Everything around me is going well, and my parents are more than thrilled to see me. The relationship between my parents and I is going great, better than it has ever been and I'm very happy about that. But I miss it. I miss the Netherlands so much. I cried for a while on Sunday morning, what would be the first full day of being in the States.

I keep busy. That's one of the few things that's helping. When I'm sitting alone or just doing nothing that's when my brain starts to wander... It feels like a dream. The longest and best dream I've ever had. I can't wait to go back, and being here and noticing little things is just making me want to go back even more.

Let me tell you some of the things I've noticed since I've been back. First of all door handles are much lower. I have no idea why I noticed this, but every time I reach for a door I don't understand why I haven't hit the doorknob yet... oh wait there it is. But why is it near my hip?! The other thing I noticed is how people react to politeness. A few times in the grocery store, I've wished people a nice day. And they look at me very quizzically, and say thank you. But I don't understand this yet. Why were they so confused? Are Americans lacking so strongly in politeness that they don't wish everyone a nice day, regardless of their job? I'm sure I'll figure this one out. But in the mean time I now know that I have become much more polite over the year. Which is never a bad thing.

I'm still just so glad to have been able to do this year abroad and grow so much into this person I've now become. I'm happier with myself than I've ever been, and I just wish more kids could just experience what I did. That is one of the reasons I want to become a volunteer for AFS. The volunteers for AFS Nederland were so helpful and so important and really just made the differences at the camps we attended. I want to give that same feeling to future AFSers who are coming to America, and maybe one day volunteer for AFS Nederland if I go back to live there.

I start work on Monday, babysitting for my little Dutch girls, so I can start speaking Dutch again with their parents! And the girls too I think. I'm really excited! And I'm going to get my old job as a Hostess back, and start training to be a server. I'm going to start a scrapbook for myself too, so that way I have something from this year to work on to keep me busy.

It feels like a dream... I can't believe that I was in the Netherlands for so long, and now I'm back... Everything looks the same, but I don't feel the same.

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