Jedes Ende ist auch ein neuer Anfang!

Nun bin ich schon seit über drei Woche wieder in Deutschland und ich muss sagen, dass es sich anfühlt als sei ich nie weg gewesen! Alles sieht noch fast gleich aus wie vor einem Jahr und man gewöhnt sich sher schnell wieder an die deutsche Kultur. Alles sieht fast so aus wie ich es letztes Jahr verlassen habe und mein Deutsch kommt so langsam auch. (Obwohl ich die meiste Zeit noch auf Englisch denke) Wenn da nicht all diese amerikanischen Sachen in meinem Zimmer rumliegen und nicht diese Heimweh nach Amerika wäre, würde ich es fast vergessen, dass ich ein Jahr in Missouri verbracht habe. Die letzten paar Tage in den Staten waren vollgeplant mit Abschieden und das amerikanische Leben noch mal zum vollsten zu erleben und natürlich das warme Wetter in Missouri zu geniessen. Mein Flug nach Hause war zwar nicht sehr einfach aber am Ende habe ich es dann doch noch sicher nach Deutschland geschafft und konnte dann endlich nach 10 Monaten meine Freunde, die eine Überraschungsfeier für mich geplant haben, in den Arm nehmen.

Es ist schwer mein Austauschjahr zusammenzufassen und vorallem in der deutschen Sprache, denn wenn ich an mein Austauschjahr denke, kann ich eigenlich nur auf Englisch meine Gefühle beschreiben, so i guess here we go!

First of all i want to say thank you to everybody who was a part of my exchange year. I want to say thank you to my Organisation YFU. This organisation made it possible for me to live my dream and they prepared me for my exchange year and they took care of me, whenever i needed them to. I also want to say thank you to my High-School and all the amazing teachers I had, the wonderful faculty and all the friends i made throughout my exchange year. Another thank you goes out to my German family and all my german friends, who supported me and stayed in contact and listed to all my stories. And then there comes my biggest thank you. I want to say thank you to my awesome host family. You guys taught me a lot, you treated me like a normal family member, like we would know each other for years. Thank for for everything you guys have done for me. I miss you already so much and ill be back for sure.

I remember the flight from Chicago to St.Louis. I think that was the first time i realized what I was about to do. I was about to live in a country with a new language, without a real family at this point and without any friends at the beginning. I had to start from zero. I basically did not have anything, besides myself. And from this point on, i decided to work hard to have a wonderful american life and to be as open as i can. Unfortunatley the relationship between me and my first host family did not work out, but i know this made me so much stronger and i was able to learn so much through this experience. Luckly i was able to find a new host family really fast, so i moved into my best friends house a month and a half after i arrived in the States. I was so blessed to find this wonderful hostfamily who supported me all the time. I had a awesome time with them and now i can say i have second family.

Although being an exchange student is not easy all the time, it was the best thing i’ve ever done in my life. I was able to learn so much about myself, the world, Germany and especially the US.

I hope everybody who gets the change to be an exchange student, takes it and enjoyes it as much as possible because it’s a once in lifetime experience and it’s a wonderful feeling to be an exchange student for a year! It’s an experience ill never be able to describena and i think if a lot of more people would be exchange students the world would be a different place, then at the end politics won’t conect people. It’s the love for each other and the understanding of different cultures.

This will probably be my last blog,but i also just want to say thank you to everbody who read my stories throughout my exchange year. I probably had the most interesting year of my life and it was a plessure to share it with you guys.

Love, Lisa


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“Exchange is change. Rapid, brutal, beautiful, hurtful, colourful, amazing, unexpected, overwhelming and most of all constant change. Change in lifestyle, country, language, friends, parents, houses, school, simply everything.
Exchange is realizing that everything they told you beforehand is wrong, but also right in a way.
Exchange is going from thinking you know who you are, to having no idea who you are anymore to being someone new. But not entirely new. You are still the person you were before but you jumped into that ice cold lake. You know how it feels like to be on your own. Away from home, with no one you really know. And you find out that you can actually do it.
Exchange is thinking. All the time. About everything. Thinking about those strange costumes, the strange food, the strange language. About why you’re here and not back home. About how it’s going to be like once you come back home. How that girl is going to react when you see her again. About who’s hanging out where this weekend. At first who’s inviting you at all. And in the end where you’re supposed to go, when you’re invited to ten different things. About how everybody at home is doing. About how stupid this whole time-zone thing is. Not only because of home, but also because the tv ads for shows keep confusing you.
Thinking about what’s right and what’s wrong. About how stupid or rude you just were to someone without meaning to be. About the point of all this. About the sense of life. About who you want to be, what you want to do. And about when that English essay is due, even though you’re marks don’t count. About whether you should go home after school, or hang out at someone’s place until midnight. Someone you didn’t even know a few months ago. And about what the hell that guy just said.
Exchange is people. Those incredibly strange people, who look at you like you’re an alien. Those people who are too afraid to talk to you. And those people who actually talk to you. Those people who know your name, even though you have never met them. Those people, who tell you who to stay away from. Those people who talk about you behind your back, those people who make fun of your country. All those people, who aren’t worth your giving a damn. Those people you ignore.
And those people who invite you to their homes. Who keep you sane. Who become your friends.
Exchange is uncomfortable. It’s feeling out of place, like a fifth wheel. It’s talking to people you don’t like. It’s trying to be nice all the time. It’s bugs.. and bears. It’s cold, freezing cold. It’s homesickness, it’s awkward silence and its feeling guilty because you didn’t talk to someone at home. Or feeling guilty because you missed something because you were talking on Skype.
Exchange is great. It’s feeling the connection between you and your host parents grow. It’s knowing in which cupboard the peanut butter is. It’s meeting people from all over the world. It’s having a place to stay in almost every country of the world.
It’s cooking food from your home country and not messing up. It’s seeing beautiful landscapes that you never knew existed.
Exchange is exchange students. The most amazing people in the whole wide world. Those people from everywhere who know exactly how you feel and those people who become your absolute best friends even though you only see most of them 3 or 4 times during your year. The people, who take almost an hour to say their final goodbyes to each other. Those people with the jackets full of pins. All over the world.
Exchange is falling in love with this amazing, wild, beautiful country. And with your home country.
Exchange is frustrating. Things you can’t do, things you don’t understand. Things you say, that mean the exact opposite of what you meant to say. Or even worse…
Exchange is understanding.
Exchange is unbelievable.
Exchange is not a year in your life. It’s a life in one year.
Exchange is nothing like you expected it to be, and everything you wanted it to be.
Exchange is the best year of your life so far. Without a doubt. And it’s also the worst. Without a doubt.
Exchange is something you will never forget, something that will always be a part of you. It is something no one back at home will ever truly understand.
Exchange is growing up, realizing that everybody is the same, no matter where they’re from. That there is great people and douche bags everywhere. And that it only depends on you how good or bad your day is going to be. Or the whole year.
And it is realizing that you can be on your own, that you are an independent person. Finally. And it’s trying to explain that to your parents.
Exchange is dancing in the rain for no reason, crying without a reason, laughing at the same time. It’s a turmoil of every emotion possible.
Exchange is everything. And exchange is something you can’t understand unless you’ve been through it !”- unknown