Today, I survive as an International Student.

I have come this close to give it up.

It hasn’t been easy for everything, to everyone especially us whom made up their mind coming to a different environment pursuing our studies, work hard on our dreams. Dreams have never been just fairy tales, but they work out through the hard ways we chose to be. International students have been through different kind of struggles and I am one of them. Walking out from your comfort zone was first, next independence strikes in. It was all easy to be written all over but actions were all that really matters. If you’re new to the society and lucky enough to read this post (although I have no idea how far is this going to spread out), you’re not alone out there, and don’t just give it up.

My experience of being an International student as rather to be described as challenging, than struggling- and that did not explain in the way where I did not struggles, I just prefer not to make it sounds scary/ unhappy that way. On my journey, I was having a lot of challenges moments. There were moments that I felt like everything has been falling apart and I thought that I’d have never gotten up to see the lights again. It wasn’t a joke or a big descriptive, but those people whom I love dearly would actually know that I ain’t bluffing out of the situation, trying to get your attentions. It’s hard to do all things by your own, and it’s not easy when you have expectations that transform into burdens on your small little lightweight body.

  1. Trying to cope with the weather/ environment/ food/ culture
  2. Dying to get out from your room and do something different but you couldn’t find the right guts
  3. Trying to be independent and brush up your time management skills
  4. You’re just a stupid dumbass in the class who misses out so many things (if you’re a third year direct entry students like me)
  5. You get so stressed out because you wanted to get a good results and not to disappoint everyone/ trying to prove yourself (if you’re a die hard perfectionist or a very high egoistic person like me)
  6. You’re just an ordinary and pale-white look little asian girl running across the lectures and library trying to set things right and being a loner
  7. Hiding under your blanket and get some sleepless nights start listening to some dark indie playlist during midnight thinking ‘Did I make the wrong choice?’
  8. Or maybe ‘Did I just annoyed her/ him? Oh my god, I must be….’

Okay, enough with all those thoughts. Yes, those were part of the whispers whining in my head all the time for the past few months I arrived in UK but some of them still exist till today. My case was probably a little different but I’m also blessed that I was lucky enough to meet those awesome and helpful people, giving me a hand/ being supportive when I was that close enough giving up everything that I had done.

When it comes to some sort of extend, it makes you realise that there are some times you have to make your decision to sacrifice something. As an example, if you wanted to be a successful musician, you have to give up your time and make sure that you practice twice harder (or maybe more) than anyone else. My case was different, I came to a realisation that if I wanted to become outstanding in this environment, I have to sacrifice time to have fun and turn the passions of mine achieving my goals as my daily activities by enjoying them.  And by that means, it says with the physics way-  transform the potential energy into kinetic energy. Also, choosing a wise group of friends that brings you positivism and happiness- you have no time for all the dramas and negativity. I will come to the friendship part later why it has something to do with it.

Again, as an international student, nothing is going to be easy if you’re aiming for something better. You have to maintain a good time management skill also you have to be very passionate about achieving your goals. Stepping ahead means walking out from your own comfort zone. You have to do things that you do not like it at all or maybe it may lead you to the results you have to abandon your very own principles. By that all means I did not mean that doing something bad, but in my very own case- I start learning on how to communicate, and I worked as a waitress in the very beginning. It was hard, and I did not like talking and communicate with people because I was too afraid to make a mistake and when I became a waitress, it helps me to open up myself by talking to people and earn some knowledge from the conversations you have with people.

It goes on. I have quite a few working experiences in 2 years time. They weren’t big enough to become a great outcast, but there were valuable experiences that you get to accumulate. As we all realise that, it is hard to get some real work experiences as an international student especially having the work restrictions. Understanding the rules an regulations because this is what the local government has to do it right, study has always come first. But it has also gotten us all losing a lot of great deals and opportunities from different companies, and all we needed was just a little opportunities to show that we are also part of the community. So we fought hard, and sometimes life get a little tougher. Private personal problems come into hand and interfere all the good times you have, and you have no choice to give up some of the things you loved about.

In this two years time, there were several times I have came this close to give up. When things suddenly fell apart and there are a lot more things that you’ve to concern about, you just don’t know what to do. You feel lost, upset and all you can see in front of you is the deep dark tunnel that has no ends. You’re screaming so hard so loud inside but you’re smiling outside, and no one knows your pain. You feel extremely alone thinking that what have you done to yourself, did you choose the right way to do it, and should you just keep going or give it up. All kind of questions keep spinning in your head and you ended up crawling into your bed started crying for no answers. You knew that crying isn’t going to help at all but that’s what you could think of at the very moment.

True friends are to support you this moment. Of course, you will receive a lot of stupid rumours that were almost destroy you- don’t give up, don’t listen to them. Once someone told me: ‘ a true friend will stay by your side while you’re in trouble but not leaving your side’. And that explains that choose your circle of friends wisely. I know that it’s hard to find a good friend especially you’re in a new environment, but eventually you will find one. I did and I guess I was lucky enough to get quite a few. It did not help much with my situations but at least it will remind me that it’s not the end of everything yet. It’s not easy, but you will handle it- and to remember it, you’re not alone.

Being an international student is not easy, but also you will live out of this. Things sometimes will get a little harder, a little harsh than you thought but keep sticking around, you’ll be fine with it eventually, you will find a way. I might seems pretty successful at the moment, but there are so many unspeakable things and thoughts around, and sometimes I do blame why is this unfairness that I have to deal with, but I know I can’t just walk away and do nothing. I have to, and I need to do something. By finding something which means you don’t stop until you get one. As a president of the International society in the university, you know you have responsibilities and I’m just glad that I was offered for this position, I’ve learnt a lot. 2016 has definitely not the easiest year I have encountered in all my life, but at least the last few months I did something out of my expectations. I will keep working hard, until I get that one gold ticket to my final goal- and you should to.

To a better 2017, here’s a smiling picture of me ready to greet another challenging year.
Processed with VSCO with kk1 preset
To those that had been/ are going through all these, you’re not alone. 
Hang in there. XOXO
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