“What a wonderful thought it is that some of the best days of our lives haven’t happened yet”
I have always loved this quote. This simple, yet profound sentence has gotten me through some tough days and sleepless nights. After taking a year off after graduating college to spend time with my family at home, I finally made it to London, baby!!! Words can’t begin to describe how wonderful it feels to be back in my favorite city! As soon as I stepped off of the plane I felt alive and energized (despite not sleeping for over 24 hours…). This feeling of calm simply came over me, as though I was meant to be here. Corny, I know. But still true.
I have known since middle school that this was the city I wanted to be in. The End Goal. Everything I’ve worked towards for as long as I can remember has been for this moment. My not-so-super-secret dream has always been to live here, but I never truly believed that it could happen. It just seemed so daunting and unrealistic, to travel to another country for more than a week or two. Coming from a fairly small town where the majority of my graduating class went to colleges within a half hour from home, choosing to attend a college that was eight hours and two states away seemed radical. People always seemed so shocked that I decided to go so far away. To me, it just seemed like the obvious thing to do. I viewed college as a way to better myself with an education both in and out of a classroom. I saw college as the perfect opportunity to pick a place that I always wanted to travel to and actually get to live there for four year. So I packed my bags, kissed my cats and dog (and family) goodbye, and heading north to New England.
I knew heading in to college that I was going to study abroad in London. Studying abroad for a semester was going to be my chance to live out my ongoing dream of “living” in London. I counted the days until I would be able to send in my application, and I finally arrived in London in January 2012. I loved every second of it, even the most miserable moments. As they say, “A bad day in London is better than a good day anywhere else!”
I found that six months was not enough for my insatiable appetite for London. Even as I was living there I was trying to figure out how I could come back again. London is an incredibly expensive city, so I knew that I would never be able to simply move there. Lucky for me, I love school, and as much as I was ready to leave the college town I had lived in for four years, I was not quite ready to leave classroom life behind. I began to think about where I wanted to study for graduate school, and I figured what better place to study history than in the city that celebrates so much of its past? I ended up going through the program Study Across the Pond, which was an enormous help in making my dream a reality. It had never occurred to me when I was in high school that going to another country for my undergraduate degree was even a possibility. Then when I made the decision to come to London for a graduate degree, it was quite daunting trying to figure out how to make that happen. But this time I was determined to make it happen. I saw this as my last real opportunity to give my London Dream a try. I made it happen, and I am so proud of myself for that.
So here I am, killing two birds with one stone: I get to study what I love in the city that I love.