I was only 20 years old when I decided to leave everything behind and move to the US. Alone. I've never left Brazil before and didn't know a single word in english. Leaving was actually pretty easy. Getting paperwork done, buying stuff, goodbye parties. It's funny to think how innocent I was about the whole moving thing; which was actually a good thing after all. I had no worries. I just wanted to leave.
The first time I felt the change was while I was walking up the stairs of the airplane. I looked left and I saw my family and friends up there inside the building, waving at me. The tears started coming down and didn't stop. I was alone. Like all alone. From now on, every single thing I had to do it was all up to me. I don't know the language. How am I gonna live? All the questions people usually think about before they decide to move just popped out in my head.
For the first 6 months, I lived in Baltimore (I went with an exchanged program and was staying at an american's family house). They were nice... but weird. I didn't feel very comfortable there and all I could think of was NY. Nothing else. I needed to get there. Somehow, I've learned english pretty fast (although, as you can probably see, I'm forgetting it even faster). I made friends. Got a boyfriend. Broke up. Went to Cancun alone for 2 weeks. Made more friends. 2 days after I came back from Cancun I was in NY. All alone again. With all my life packed in 2 suitcases.
For the next year and a half, it was all about NJ/NY, back and forth. Made more friends. More break ups. Parties. Jobs. Freedom. NY was everything I've expected it to be - and more. It felt like home for me, a feeling I've never had back in Brazil. That missing thing I had back then was gone. It could have been a happy ending if I haven't decided I wanted to go to med school. I had to weight everything I had in my hands back then. How much I really wanted to do that versus how badly I loved NY. I can always come back, I thought. But I knew, deep down, I'm not the kind of person to come back to the same place. I barely even go to Brazil. I look at the world, how much I'm missing, how many things I wanted to know, to visit, to learn. It feels like it's a waste of time to go back to the same places.
To leave NY was much, much harder than to leave Brazil. I had to leave really important people to me. I was crying all the way to the airport. At the airport. On the plane. I started regretting my decision right away. When I arrived back in Brazil after 2 years, it was great to see everyone again. Family. Friends. What wasn't so great was how much I've changed. My feelings for everyone were the same, but still, something was off. While living in the US, I've crossed so many different people from everywhere. I've learned more than I could have in a lifetime. And, somehow, I couldn't be the same. And I felt like everyone was still the same. Which made me realize I could never again go back home for real.
Only 2 months later, I was already in Buenos Aires. All alone. Zero knowledge of spanish. I had a month to get my shit together. It was a really weird year. I just had NY all over me and I felt like I was going backwards by coming down here. I started to resent everything around me. The weather. The food. The places. The language. I couldn't fit in. School was good and I did well, so I just sucked it all up and kept on going. I wasn't a runner back then, but I was teaching spinning and going to the gym. The second semester was bad. I had an almost anorexia and was totally overdoing it with my exercises. I was kind of alone and didn't make any effort to meet anyone. I had so many things to talk about, to share, to listen to, but I felt like I couldn't meet anyone with the same interests. I know I was being an arrogant bitch.
By the end of the year, I went back to Brazil and traveled a lot around the country. I barely met any of my friends, mostly because I wasn't really in a party mood. Vacations went like crazy fast and I was back in Buenos Aires. Which brings us back to 2011.
(to be continued...).