People ask me all the time if I ever get homesick. My answer is always no, however I do get people sick. Sheffield will always be home. It was where I was born, raised and taught many a life lesson including how to make a good brew and speak in a way half of the world will not understand. Sure I miss the rolling hills, I miss the friendliness of Yorkshire folk and I really miss never having to worry about what condiment will accompany my food ( always Hendo’s! ) but I am not homesick.
The place is which I reside now probably has a huge part in helping this. I live in Queenstown, in the south of New Zealand and my god it’s bloody beautiful. If you have ever been it doesn’t really need an explanation, if you are yet to visit my question to you is, what are you waiting for? There are mountains as far as the eye can see, the lake is as blue as you see in the postcards and the weather is tip top. Maybe living in such a beautiful place makes it harder to miss my hometown.
HOWEVER… the people in my life I miss dearly. A day doesn’t pass by where I don’t think of them. I miss being in the same time zone, being able to pick up the phone whenever a random thought pops into my head. I miss popping round for a brew, I miss having my family a stone throw away from my house, I miss meeting my friends for coffee or wine. I miss drinking tea with Liss, car karaoke with Joe & sleepovers with Rose. I miss walking in the peak district with my Dad and Step mum and seeing my grandma on the weekends. I miss my mum’s daily updates and my Step dad’s homemade spaghetti. So yeah maybe I do miss elements of home but I know it’s the people I really miss. I am fortunate enough to have an incredible bunch of friends. Three of them now all reside in different towns around the UK. The bonds I have with them individually & as a group is one I can never replicate nor break. They are quite literally my rocks and have helped mould me into the person I am today.
I was lucky enough to host one of them in my new home this weekend. I felt sick standing there waiting for her bus to arrive, I was shaking and crying before she even got off, then before I knew it she was running at me with open arms. All my emotions flooded out and we stood and cried like babies. I speak to these people every week on the phone & via text nearly everyday but nothing compares to seeing them in the flesh!
We drank wine, ran through the hills, ate good food and soaked in the ‘zennest’ tubs in NZ. Time went by far to quick and before I knew it I was waving goodbye to one of my best gal pals. I thank my lucky stars daily that I have friends like this because even with a million miles between us, time differences and life changes, everything and I mean every single thing remains the same, apart from laughing, we always seem to laugh a little harder. It’s so important to talk to the ones you love regularly especially if you live away from them, you never know they may be feeling the same as you. It is also so important not to let that degree of homesickness prevent you from enjoying your trip or move overseas.
I’ve been away from the motherland for over three years now and found the following helped me when starting to get homesick or in my case ‘people sick’
Make a bucket list for your new country – get out and explore you new backyard, you never know what you might find.
Get adopted… not literally but do go out and make new friends. New friends don’t have to replace your old ones but will make your time away a lot easier. Having people to talk to and adventure with is the best remedy when you feel down.
Make your new home a home. Embrace your new surrounds, buy those comfy cushions to decorate your bedroom & immerse yourself into your new town.
Talk to home. Don’t bottle up your feelings. They all miss you as much as you miss them and their aint nothing finer than hearing a familiar voice on the end of the phone.
Document your time away. Write it down, take photographs, blog it, scrapbook it. Whatever your medium to document make sure you do. You will have the best time revisiting those memories with your home slices.
Get out and enjoy this world. Your people aren’t going anywhere and will be there for you every step of the way.