Last night I walked down King Street to the local cinema and saw the movie Halloween. Ya know the original story line with Michael Myers? Well this movie was absolutely terrifying, way more thrilling and gory than the original 1978 film (in my opinion). I was freaked out, and it took me forever to fall asleep last night. I normally set a 30 minute timer for my eucalyptus nightlight, but I shamelessly slept with it on the entire night because I was simply too scared of the dark.
Despite all the Halloween scares, I woke up this morning totally fine. I made a fresh cup of french pressed coffee, read the school newspaper and totally forgot about my irrational fear of Michael Myers hiding in my closet. I went to class and then a cafe on campus to get some work done. It wasn’t until I received a text from a friend at my home university that my spring semester classes have been released online, then I got freaked out...again.
This was a totally different kind of freak out. I wasn’t scared for my life, I was scared for my sanity. I started browsing all the classes that I have to take for my major and liberal arts distribution at my home university and I got completely overwhelmed. I need to take a chem class that meets 5x a week with lectures, recitation, and lab. I need to take a psych class as a prerequisite just so I can take another psych class. I need carve out time for all my classes around my lacrosse practice/games because our season starts in February. What I really need is to shut my computer and chill for just a second. I haven’t experienced this type stress since I’ve been in Australia, and I forgot what it feels like dealing with all these obligations I have back at home. Then of course I started to feel guilty for even being stressed in the first place. I have this idea in my head that I can’t be stressed or unhappy because I’m studying abroad...what’s there to complain about? It’s difficult to come to terms that it’s okay to have these moments, they’re going to happen anywhere in life, even Australia. I’m not writing this blog to rant, although it weirdly helped me relax, there is a greater purpose to this...abroad has helped me put some things into perspective.
Everything about being abroad as been a complete dream. I essentially got to hit pause on my life and live in a new country for 4 ½ months. It has given me an opportunity to take a step back from my hectic life at home and realize some things about myself. From realizing that I’m an incredibly sentimental person, way more than I previously thought, to realizing that green grapes taste better when they are frozen, I’ve learned a lot. Everything that I learned from this amazing experience has helped me change some things about myself for the better. I’ve gained a better sense of my passions and where to invest my time. Time is valuable! I don’t need to be wasting it on stressing over something, especially if it isn’t important to me.
Thankfully, this freak out was short and sweet and did not require a nightlight. Once I really thought about all my “stress” awaiting me at home, I was able to quickly change my mindset. The only obligations I need to worry about are the ones that I’m passionate about and want to do. They are obligations for a reason. Because they matter to me. And even then, my biggest worries are smaller than they seem. I only have a month left in Australia, so if this little freak out episode has shown me anything it’s that I need to make the most of it while I’m here.
I’ve only been to the gym at Sydney Uni a handful of times this semester, but I saw this quote written on the wall by Muhammad Ali that I love, “Don’t count the days, make the days count.” With only a month left I am definitely going to try and live by these words. Who knew the gym could make me more wise? Maybe I should go more often. Yeah, maybe...