You are living your dream life..!” , we often come across this quote being in a foreign land away from our home country. For the ones who are away from their homeland can relate to this. We ponder on this thought and have discussions with friends and families around this.
Yes , this is true that we blessed to have an opportunity that many of us dream of since childhood , many of us have goals aligned towards studying abroad and making a living , for some it’s something that happens by luck and opportunities that come our way. By whichever route we landed here, once you are in a foreign country that’s where the real challenges begin.
From the social media posts and stories it seems like we are leading a perfect life , visiting exotic places , earning in foreign currencies , driving amazing cars , maintaining a high-profile lifestyle . We are often subjected to quotes like “They travel so much” ,”they just enjoy all the time”, “they are used to leading a high-profile lifestyle”, “they earn in foreign currencies , must be rich by now”. What is not evident though , which doesn’t come across as easily is the amount of efforts that are involved and the mental journey that we go through. Each of us have a different story to tell and experiences to share.
For the students , it’s the tremendous amount of loans parents need to pay for. Parents coming from a humble middle-class family background cannot afford this easily. The students end up doing part time jobs while on campus just to make enough money to spend on any additional expenses that they can bear by themselves. They struggle tremendously to get into a job with lack of experience but need to get in one quickly to repay the loans. For them at a tender age , they know the value of money and each penny counts.
For the people with families , we often come across confusions on whether they want to be here or want to return to their homeland. The struggles start from everyday expenses for kids and their tuition fees , home-loans / rental-home expenses, car-loans, health and car insurance costs , bill payments and the list goes on. If they manage to get good salaries it’s a plus. There is also often fear that the kids would never know their culture being away from the homeland so we see people celebrating more festivals here than they usually would in their homeland. If within the families , both husband and wife work , it’s relatively easier on the expenses side but then day-cares are additional expenses and juggling the work-life balance isn’t a piece of cake.
Many wives , who could possibly have decent career back home , cannot work here which could be due to various different factors. It’s difficult initially to adjust just being at home and take care of the house-hold chores completely giving up all the aspirations. At home , we do not have any household help here. Each task , right from cleaning ,cooking , laundry , washing dishes , paying bills, driving , groceries everything is to be taken care on our own.
At the jobs , it’s an extremely competitive environment if you are working at a decent workplace. You constantly have to prove your talent to sustain else you can be replaced any day , anytime. You have to work even harder and we come across people around with extremely stressful life with no work-life balance. Again , whatever it is you have earned , is never enough since you have so many additional expenses that your earnings go towards. If you change jobs often here , you end up moving from state to state. Our shopping for homes usually are based on the moves we would make in future so as to travel light. We have many people making multiple moves in a year which really gets challenging.
Amongst all the above , we can never be certain , unless you are a citizen of the country , whether you would be in the country for the rest of your life. There is always an uncertainty of needing to move back which could be based on your choice or not by choice. The world that you have built around you which is your “dream world” for all these years always has a background uncertainty around it. Many of us deal with this uncertainty every single day and it becomes a part of our life. Stability seems like a far-fetched dream but we live with it each-day.
We are away from our families and friends become our family here .We do miss out on many important events in our life like ceremonies and festivals and we make up for it by celebrating the same with our friends. Although , it is difficult in emergency situations back home to reach on time for instance if someone lost their loved ones. The beautiful connections made here often end-up being temporary with the moves we or our friends make for different opportunities with lack of day-to-day in-person interactions.
Why lead this life is often a question that many of us ask and we question ourselves about? For me , the answer is precisely for all the above reasons. We chose this life , have struggled and worked really hard towards this life for many years and the what we have built around us today is the outcome of the tremendous efforts and struggles that went behind building this life.We have struggled, navigated though the struggle and moved past it and aimed towards better future. We have experiences to share , choices that we made , opportunities we strive for , lessons learnt which helped us grow and a memorable journey along the way. The choice in order to lose some to gain some is never an easy one and we learn to take each day as it comes and make this most out it. We learn to make these ongoing changes a part of our life and continue with our journey by taking one step at a time.
Please leave your comments. I would love to hear your thoughts around this topic.
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