Homesickness : How To Survive
It’s November. In the United States, that means the holiday season has officially begun with the onset of Thanksgiving and Christmas preparations taking place. And that means HOMESICKNESS is at an all time high for me and some others. And there is no cure. We have learned to cope with it the best way we know how. But, it hurts at different times and there is no magic pill, no shot, no cure, just a longing for home.
I went to school with the same kids from elementary through high school, I attended my grandmother and parent’s college alma mater 45 minutes outside of town, the husband and I bought a home 45 minutes away from our parents. Needless to say, the first time I move away from home, it’s 4557 miles away, so, I have definitely experienced adult homesickness.
Over the last two years, homesickness has had me feeling some type of way and although I still have not discovered a cure, I have discovered different coping mechanisms.
Homesickness is just that, it’s an illness. So what do you do when you are ill? You take care of yourself and treat your symptoms. It’s important to keep doing those activities that bring you peace and happiness and incorporate your new home in those activities. It’s also called self care. My birthday is at the end of November, with Thanksgiving lurking I knew I was going to feel some kind of way so I scheduled a spa day-massage, facial, jacuzzi time and nothing else. Not only did I deserve it, I felt refreshed and renewed.
Chat With Family and Friends
A FaceTime or WhatsApp video chat is ideal but if not, take what you can get. Scheduling some connection time with family and friends back home is essential to helping get over the hump. Personally, these people know me best so I can totally be free and catch up on all things about home, my people and anything I am missing. They keep me grounded and remind me that this experience is one of the best decisions I (we) have ever made. It doesn’t hurt to have your ego stroked a little and your people can certainly do that for you.
Discover Something About Your New Home
Ironically, one of the best ways to take some of the sting out of homesickness is to discover something about your new home. Schedule some time to walk out your front door and explore. It can be a hike, a new coffee shop, a market or even a popular tourist attraction. To help me, I created an Ireland Bucket List of things I must do during this awesome experience of living abroad. This is now your home and you need to learn all about it in order to call it home.
Connect With New People
If you don’t have a community, now is the time to create one. Having a community in your new home will help it not feel so new. Your community will not become a replacement for your community at home but it will give you a sense of belonging and allow you to connect over common interests. I know first hand that it is not easy to make new friends as an adult. But, if you get out more and put yourself out there, your garden of friendships will grow as you continue to nurture it. And the best part of it all is that you could end up with great friends all over the world. How cool is that?
At the very least, invite someone out for coffee or schedule a call home for a quick session. Be upfront and let the other person know that you are feeling a little homesick and need to shake the feelings off a little. And then go for it. Talk it out. Let it go. Release those feelings and then get back at it. Circle back to one of the other suggestions listed and work down the list. There is no homesickness cure, but a little comfort can ease the sting a little.
Have you ever experienced homesickness? If so, what is your go-to remedy? Please leave a comment below and share. I’d love to hear about it.
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