Saying goodbye is always going to be difficult and something you really need to prepare yourself for. I really began to feel the emotional impact of my emigration decision during those ‘going away nights’ with friends. At these times, the reality of my decision would hit home when goodbye was being mentioned, and the tears would start to roll. But even this did not prepare me for the guilt I felt when leaving my family. I had never seen my parents so emotional and it was all down to my decision, one I had to take responsibility for. In particular, leaving my grandparents was extremely hard and something I had dreaded, despite the full support and encouragement they gave me. A friend gave me great advice about leaving and going to the airport. They suggested I say goodbye to my family at home and then ask a best friend to take me to the airport; to say your goodbyes to close family members at the security gate is just too emotionally charged. On the day of the big move, we had dinner at home with family, and after an emotional farewell, my friend and I headed to the airport. Finally, at the gate I had to say goodbye to my friend and take the lonely walk through security. As we were doing so, a very handsome man walked past and said ‘it can’t be that bad!’. This was enough to turn our tears to laugher and my friend told me to go for it! At that I walked through security to my new life in Australia and I haven’t looked back. I was in the very fortunate position of having friends to collect me from the airport when I arrived to start my new life, and it was a great comfort to know I was going to be met by my Aussie family upon my arrival. Leaving friends and family is a massive emotional hurdle, and one that you need to mentally prepare for. It will be difficult, but don’t let it stop you. Strong emotions are a perfectly natural reaction in the face of such a big move, but remember that the world is smaller than it once was, and you have modern technology to help you keep in touch, not to mention the opportunities for flying home to see friends and family, or for them to come and visit you! Keep these things in mind and you will be fine. I promise you, after a period of ‘settling in’, you won’t look back!
Saying goodbye is hard to do: making the move to Oz
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