As the days wind down in Malaysia, it’s hard to say how I feel. Am I sad? Do I feel like it was worth it?
It’s been quite a few mixed emotions the last two months. In some ways it mirrors the feelings of my exchange, but mostly, it’s been a totally different experience with very different feelings. Overall it feels numb, like I am not sure how I should feel. I will admit I have neglected my social life a lot more here. It really shows when I realize I didn’t become close to many people in KL. This widely contrasted my exchange where I spent much of my time building relationships with quite a few people.
One of my exchange friends came to visit me two weeks ago in Malaysia and we were able to reminiscence a bit on our time in Cape Town. She is the only friend I’ve been able to see since we all went our separate ways almost exactly seven years ago.
“What do you remember?” She asked me.
I answered, “I remember a lot.”
I had a lot of emotions associated with the city, the campus and the people. I remembered conversations I had. I remember routines I established. I even remember that lovely chocolate croissant from Pick n Pay that I discovered (Yes Sam, I will always still talk about it!). There are so many important things that happened that thinking about it always swells emotions in me.
Would I have such feelings with KL?
I don’t think I will. I never allowed myself to connect in that way. I kept it “light”. And when I say that to myself, I am afraid I sound like someone else I know.
If you have spent time abroad, you have to be good with goodbyes. But it’s something I’ve never been good at especially when I form attachments. Maybe this is why I didn’t do so in KL. I was tired and I didn’t feel like going through it again.
But nonetheless, it has been worthwhile. I have loved the freedoms and the experiences. I have an idea to move on and have taken the first steps in
the right a direction. I thought I would be further ahead, but what I know about this line of work is that you’re never where you think you’re going to be.
So now I find myself asking, “what the hell do I do now?”
Just another day for the unsuccessful student.