This post is not about travelling but rather a personal essay of my experience of understanding and accepting myself. However, while this is not about travelling, my journey to discovering myself is linked to travelling. Specifically, it is connected with getting to know other cultures and people, who helped me manifest myself with their stories and guidance.
Since I was a kid, I felt different. I was always a curious child, and liked to question everything around me. I enjoyed reading the dozens of encyclopedias we had at my parents’ home and to learn as many things I could. As a child, I was explicitly very enamoured by space. My curiosity was often seen as a weird thing, at least for my peers. For adults, it seemed like a fantastic trait. However, I am also an introvert making it difficult for me to open up to others and be in big groups. Unfortunately for me, I was born and raised in a dominantly extrovert country. It was often difficult for me to find like-minded people.
When I started thinking of my future more seriously, I had decided that I wanted to study abroad. Not because I don’t like my country, but because I wanted to explore different parts of the world and perhaps meet people whose mentality was in a similar wavelength as mine. So, at the age of 18, I moved to the UK. I was lucky to be in a university with a union of hundreds of different student societies and clubs. I tried many different ones, such as dancing, book, anime, hiking, and even self-development student societies. However, the one that allowed me to meet people from all over the world was the international society.
The international society was the place for students who needed a semblance of home and familiarity. It was home away from home. At the same time, though, it was the best place to get to know of different cultures, languages, habits, ethics, or even different approaches to politics, economy, science, and all kinds of lifestyle events. It was probably one of the best education forms I had during my university years. Whenever I would join the meetings at the “Global Cafe” as we called it, I would strangely feel alive.
At “Global Cafe,” I got meet some of whom I call my best friends today, and of course, they are all from completely different countries and backgrounds from me. Yet, we have a deep connection and strong friendship. Through them and our often very long conversations and debates on various topics, I got to see the world and people from a different perspective. For this reason, I wished to travel and see or live all these beautiful and wondrous things and places my friends taught me about. And that’s how my journey of discovery started.
I can’t say that only by travelling you get to discover yourself. At least in my case, that was not the only factor to understand and know myself. However, by travelling, I found that I was not weird, and I was not alone in my endeavour to find my true self. I found like-minded people who helped me understand better both myself and the world. I learned of different cultures and that sometimes there is no right and wrong. I realised that the world is much bigger than what the media show us, and there is much more diversity than we think. I understood that it is OK to be yourself, and it is OK to be different. Because there is nothing better in this world from being true to yourself.
Thank you for reading, and I hope, if you are not sure yet where you belong on this earth, you get to find your peace and happiness soon:)
Sending virtual hugs and happiness to everyone!