When life gives you lemons…

Less than a year ago moving to Spain and following my dreams sounded like an illusion or at least a crazy idea that would not work out as planned. Even though I managed to overcome my fear and move away, I must say that things, in fact, didn’t work out as planned. There were some difficulties along the way. But was the struggle worth it? (Spoiler: yes, it was!)

My first struggle was that I didn’t find a full-time job because I wasn’t registered here, but when you don’t have a job you can’t register. Very logical, right? So, this vicious circle registration process got on my nerves. Eventually, with a little help from a lawyer, I finally got things done.

Before I left, I imagined finding a “real” job within a few weeks, what a deception! However, life turned out more rose coloured than I expected because my part-time teaching makes me happy. Seeing little kids interested in the beautiful language English is, is priceless. With extra time on my hands, I decided to study a master in Emotional Intelligence and NLP.  I didn’t plan to start studying again, but now I am kind of grateful that finding a full-time job didn’t work out. My master relates to sociology and comes in handy while teaching. I even do my master in Spanish to improve my language skills and in the hope to get rid of my silly accent.

The second struggle that came on my path was that I didn’t feel at home in Barcelona. I missed the flat green Dutch landscape, stamppot (a Dutch dish that many foreigners find terrible), and above all, my family. Before I left, I imagined I would feel at home immediately while eating paella and getting a nice tan. Unfortunately, this had been a lie. Even though Spain is beautiful and the weather is a gift from the gods, for me it turned out to be difficult to leave my homeland. I felt very “unrooted”, while I also loved being in Spain and wanted to stay here. After 7 months I finally feel that Barcelona is my home. My second home, because I will always be a Dutch girl.

Despite my fears, things turned out better than I ever imagined. I still can’t believe that I really moved to another country and I am curious what the future might bring. I bet it’s beyond what I can imagine.

Lastly, I will give you my recipe for good luck. When life gives you lemons, make ceviche. For those of you who don’t know yet, this is a raw fish dish with a lot of lemon juice, fresh onions, coriander and many other things. You will love it!

Are there any fellow wanderers who want to share their experiences about getting used to another country and learning a new language? I am curious about your stories, so leave a reaction below!

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