Many people grow up dreaming of one day waving goodbye to this land of shamrocks, and calling somewhere far and exotic their home. Others get scared at the thought of leaving behind Mammy and her home-cooked meals and moving away. I'm in between. I want to live abroad, well, I will be moving abroad this September, but I'm also scared shitless. The majority of the time when you tell someone you want to/are moving away, you tend to get a whole load of shit from them. Because they're such experts, y'know? They have the experience to tell me that I shouldn't move to France because the people are rude and it will be a waste of time (cheers for that Anuty Mary). But that shouldn't stop you. Don't let the nay-sayers stop you from taking the plunge, and soaking up the sun and culture of somewhere far away. If you're thinking about making footprints across the world, here are some myths that you hear about moving abroad, and how they're total bullshit:
You should only move if/when you've finished college.
Em.... what? This sounds like something someone who has no clue how college works would say (no offence). Don't let college stop you. You don't need a degree to move away and experience life. Life experience is just as important and valuable as an education. So many colleges and courses here in Ireland are suitable for an Erasmus, meaning you can defer your course for a year or two while you go live it up in Germany. Don't worry about missing out on college, or freaking out that you might not graduate with your class. All those things will seem so small when you're far away. And yeah, it might take a while to remember how to actually write an essay or even reference a goddamn book when you do come back to college, but that's part and parcel. Your life doesn't have to revolve around college, just because you feel it should.
Travelling is for the young.
False. Travelling is for everyone, no matter what the age. There is no age restriction on getting on that plane and just going somewhere. If you think you're too old, or even too young, do as Tay Tay says; Shake it off. All you're really feeling is the fear and intimidation of going somewhere unknown, for the first time maybe. Sure, if you're in the middle of your twenties you may have *shudder* responsibilities, but that doesn't mean that you're chained to where you are right now. Suck it up, make arrangements, and say adieu to those responsibilities for a little while.
You can't travel alone.
Also false. Maybe the people who say this are too afraid to travel or live by themselves, but so many people do. If you've never lived alone before, then this takes some getting used to. Mix that in with a foreign country you've never been to before, and yeah, it can be shit scary. But when you get used to it, and you do get used to it, and learn your way around and actually learn to cook something other than beans on toast, it's pretty great. Going alone means you get to do your own thing, and forces you to talk to people you wouldn't have otherwise. Do your own thang, girl.
You can't move to a country where you don't speak the language.
Maybe they haven't heard of a little thing called English? That like, a shit load of people speak? And hello, the Google translate app. As a language student, I can vouch for it. It's bae. So don't worry about something as minor as a language barrier, because once you know the basics like toilet, Wi-Fi, and shots, you'll be graaaaaand. Swear. And besides, let's not under-estimate the power of body language...
Irish people are the only friendly people.
As much as I am proud of our little nation for our (mostly) true reputation, we're not the only great people in this world. Don't be under the impression that everyone else in the world is a dickhead. I mean, every country has them, of course. But, there are friendly people to be found everywhere you go. Because let's face it, if you're nice to someone they'll likely be nice back.
Living abroad is a waste of time.
This is a load of bullshit. I can't think of a better way to spend your time. Not only is moving to a new country incredibly exciting, it is also so worthwhile. Making such a big change in your life forces you to look at the life you have now, and if there's any changes you want to make to it, or yourself. It gives you a chance to grow, away from whatever dicks are here at home. People can think it's a waste of time, time you could spend looking for the job you're going to slave away at for the next thirty odd years, or it's irresponsible to do something that's genuinely fun. But what they don't know is maybe moving abroad will give you the inspiration to write that book, or the courage to apply for the internship you think you'll never get, or even just give you the space to clear your head on what it is that you want.
You have to have money.
To earn money, you should probably get a job. AND GUESS WHAT?? Jobs exist in other places than Ireland. And let's face it, if you're a student, you're most likely poor. So what do you have to lose? Us students are used to the poor life, no matter the country. So spend your money to get there, and get a shitty job to try earn it all back. It's all part of the experience. Shitty jobs are essential to growing up.
It has to be part of your "plan".
Okay, first of all, who even really has a plan? I mean a real one, that doesn't involve what names you're going to give the fifty cats you're going to adopt. And if you do have a plan, please tell the rest of us unsure fuckers how to make one. We could really use the help. People can have a plan; go to college, graduate, somehow find a job, maybe a boyfriend or several hundred cats and live happily ever after. But a lot of people don't. And I don't think you have to. You can't organise life people, it plays by its own rules. We all go out of life the same way (bit morbid, soz) no matter what you do, so what's the point in trying to plan every second of it? So you leave college later than expected. So you don't start working until 2 years after your planned age. WHATEVER. Fuck "plans". Throw caution to the wind guys and gals, and make that change. Do it. Everything else will fall into place.