One of the best things about living abroad is that it brings people together. I have spent time with people here in Paris when we never even used to hang out back in California. Its really great to connect with people from your past and also making new friends. Coco is one of those girls. We went to SDSU together and were in all the same class (both hospitality/event majors) but we never became close. When I moved to Paris I got in touch with her for some moving advice and now we spend almost every day together. We had to travel across the world to become such good friends!
Funny how it works, right?
Well, I am thankful for her and our adventures and I asked her to tell you guys what she is thankful for this holiday season. She has been living in Paris for over 2 and a half years and just made the decision to move her life back home. We are on the same flight back to LAX! So here she is, go check out her blog for more Paris secrets and amazing travel stories!
When Brittany asked me to write a guest post about all that I was thankful for I was excited and then hit with a feeling of worry. Why? Because trying to think of everything I am thankful this year seemed like an overwhelming task. Once I finally forced myself to sit down and crank it out, I was so happy I had time to think about my last year. Life is constantly going to quickly and I think there is less and less time to focus on appreciating what we have.
With this being my third Thanksgiving abroad, I am starting to forget what an awesome holiday Thanksgiving actually is. I mean yeah, of course any holiday that consists of eating all day, at least 3 different desserts, and some serious family time is incredible but Thanksgiving is more than that. It is just what this post has allowed me to do: reflect.
Being an expat is always hard during American holidays, but it is a prime example of one of the things I am most thankful this year: family. I don’t mean only family in the conventional way. When living abroad you are forced to create your own family here because you have nothing else. I have had many “families” while living in France and I am thankful for each one. I couldn’t have survived the hardships of being an au pair with out my fellow cohorts and this year I have found people who share the interests and goals as me (and can relate to our insane lives dealing with the French!)
And of course I am thankful for my actual family. I am SO thankful for Skype, Whatsapp, Heytell, etc. It is not the easiest thing living thousands of miles away but I could have never done this without the constant support of my family. They are truly my strength, cheerleading squad, and support system all wrapped into one!
Although the hardest times of my life happened this year, I am grateful for each and every experience, good and bad. They all have taught me and allowed me to grow. So this Thanksgiving I am most thankful for my experiences over the last year and the people I have been able to share them with. Yeah, I may be giving thanks in a tiny flat instead of with my family and a plate full of turkey, but it doesn't make me any less appreciative this year. I am one lucky girl!
Happy Thanksgiving à tous!