So I’ve finally made it. As I looked out of the speeding train’s window , my eyes falling on stretches of green fields , separated ever so often by the neat neighbourhoods situated between Frankfurt and Marburg , I tried to take it all in. I thought about how the past few months of preparing for this move had been, and realized that the packing, the visa issuing process and the long string of emails between me and my contacts in Germany, was something entirely different than actually setting foot there, letting it sink in, and knowing that after years of preparation, you’ve actually made it.
Many believe that the first step towards studying in Germany is perhaps getting an acceptance letter from one of the educational institutes, or reaching a certain level of German proficiency, or even applying for your visa. I believed so too , but only as I stepped onto my flight leaving Cairo and heading to Frankfurt , my chest feeling heavy and my mind hesitant , did I realize that the first, and most important step is actually making that decision , one that involves leaving your home country , your parents , siblings , family , friends or in short ; everything and everyone you’ve ever known and have grown too close to , that imagining your life without them is surreal and mildly intimidating . However all of that seems like the easy part, when you compare it to all the waiting, effort and, of course, bureaucracy that you face throughout your preparation. From my experience, it’s not. You have to be willing to take that leap, away from your comfort zone, and embrace change, which, I think, we as human beings tend to instinctively resist. Does that sound a bit negative? I choose to view it as a heads-up to what you might feel during this phase, and a genuine reminder that you should be prepared.
Having said that, all the heaviness in my chest was replaced by pure curiosity and a tingling sense of excitement once the plane had landed. That is one beauty of moving to another country, especially one as promising as Germany. You’re starting over, no one really knows you just yet, so you get to write your story all over again, or rather a new one that you can shape the way you see fit. You carry no weight of your previous life, just the experiences you’ve been through, the lessons you’ve learned and the dreams you’ve drawn out for yourself. For the first time in my life, I am actually looking forward to starting classes. The thrill of meeting different people, making friends in this colourful atmosphere that Germany provides, or even the simple pleasure of having a whole new place to explore and make memories, is worth every tiny bit of energy you spend on getting yourself here.
So here’s to a new start.