Belonging everywhere… and nowhere

When you live in different countries for several years and you get used to bonding with different cultures, learning to adapt to other ways of doing things, all of a sudden, you find yourself belonging everywhere…and nowhere.10388113_10154344439710624_2908008728183063952_n

After finishing high school, when I was 18, I started changing countries at least every three years. I moved from Romania to Hungary where I spent one year in Budapest, then I moved to Italy, Milan where I lived two years consecutively before moving to the US in Los Angeles for a while, and then back to Milan again. Three years later I found myself all packed up with a decision to move back to my home country – Romania, but to the capital city, Bucharest. I stayed there 2 years and a half, and just when I thought I have settled down, life decided to send me on one more cultural exploration: Switzerland (Lausanne), where I have been living for one year now.

I have for sure taken from each culture many positive aspects, and every country shaped me to eventually become who I am today. I have learned a lot of things all these years from different people with very different lives and backgrounds, and at the end of the day each of these cultures left a mark on me…which yes, makes me unique in my own way, but which also makes me fit everywhere…. and nowhere. I realize that understanding how life goes and feels in different corners of the world, makes me think that wherever I settle I have a piece of heart and mind somewhere else. I am not truly complete in any place anymore and there’s no way I will ever be, because there will be something of value I have left in another place: be it people, be it a way of living, be it a system, be it nature, and the list goes on.

It’s funny how living in many countries can be both a blessing and a small curse, allow me to be a bit dramatic (I learned this from Italy by the way:))) – drama is passion after all an Italian would tell you). The idea is that living abroad means living with a little compromise on something for the rest of your life. There’s always a some small thing that worked a bit better somewhere else. I am sure people who changed countries can identify themselves with that…

So, there you go, this is the epiphany I had today, living in the most civilized and organized place on Earth, surrounded by wonderful scenery and nature, where people live the good life (Switzerland), but missing crazy nights out from Bucharest, a “more accessible” health system where I could get priority like in Eastern Europe – I am a spoiled brat with that I know (call me crazy), missing the always good weather and sun from California, the real shopping streets of Milan, and the delicious Italian food and good sushi, the vibrant life of a Latin country, and of course people…people from all the other places I lived in…because in every place there were people settling in my heart…it always happened, and for that I am grateful. I have met so many wonderful people from so many different countries that are really close to my heart. Having lots of people I miss makes me think how lucky I am! 🙂 The destiny of a continuous traveler…