I didn't understand why I was doing this. I have never lived away from my parents and I have lived in the same house for 21 years. The six hour time change was really hard on me, it was difficult to be going to bed when all my friends were wanting to talk. Of course I would stay up and Skype them because I needed them to reassure me I was doing the right thing moving to Paris. I got lost approximately seven times a day, and listened to sad playlists. Anything with the word 'Home' in the song title was bound to start a cry-fest.
HOWEVER, after my first week as an Au Pair in France, things started to look up. I joined a Facebook group called Au Pairs in Paris and quickly started making plans with other people, who, low and behold, were in the exact same position as I was. I met so many interesting people from around the world in my first few weeks here and at this two month mark of the big move, I am happy to call them my friends.
The family was beyond welcoming. I found it really comforting that even though they didn't know me, they were willing to do anything to help my move as easy as possible, because they knew I was having a hard time. I celebrated my 21st birthday in the first two weeks I was here. I assumed it would be a really sad day because I didn't think people knew me well enough to want to celebrate a near-strangers birthday, but it turns out I was just being a pessimist and they actually bought me a cake and champagne.
I cried, but for the first time since I had been there, happy tears. The mother I work for actually bought me a toaster which was the greatest surprise because I had been secretly praying for one.
I stop and get a baguette on my way to pick of the kids from school. I sit and read in the local parks, get a coffee at a cute cafe. And I'm proud to say I only get lost about once or twice a week now!
Fast-forward to today and I am sitting in my room, packing my bag for a trip I'm taking to Northern France with my mom (WHO IS COMING TO VISIT! WOOH!) and writing this blog post with a smile on my face. I've been here for two months and although there are moments when I'm missing home terribly, I know there's nothing for me there right now.
I'm meant to be here, exploring a new city and meeting amazing people from all over the world who I know will be my life-long friends. Sometimes it just takes a positive attitude and a little initiative to meet new people for your views on this kind of opportunity to change. I look back at my first week as an au par, and laugh/feel a little sorry for myself for waiting so long to give Paris a chance.
It's one of the most beautiful and incredible cities in the world, and to have wasted a week crying in my studio apartment seems a little mellow-dramatic. Don't make the same mistake I did if you choose to become an Au Pair in France or another new country. There's so much to see and learn and I can't imagine ever having regretted moving here.
Enjoy your journey as an Au Pair through GeoVisions. :)