Tips & Tricks, Gender & Identity, Life Stories, Advice, Life

21 things that will 100% happen if you move far from home

There's no place like home… except the new place you move.

Five years ago, I moved from my home outside of Boston to go to college in the South.

There are so many things about my life now I never could have predicted then, and there are so many ways my life has changed because I left home. For one thing, I never expected to experience such culture shock.

Even though I was still in the USA, so many experiences felt completely foreign to me, and as I would go back home from time to time I would find myself looking at what had once been familiar through a brand new lens. No matter what regions or countries you move to or from, moving far from home is always an adjustment.

1. The greeting customs are all different even if it’s still the same language you grew up with.

community hello GIF
[image description: student awkwardly waving and then pretending to have been scratching their head]
I’m still not used to strangers saying hi to me on the street.

2. You find out things were weird you didn’t know were weird.

mike napoli moments GIF
[image description: excited bowler candlepin bowling]
Turns out no one has heard of candlepin bowling.

3. You miss the specific things that make where you grew up unique.

dunkin donuts coffee GIF
[image description: GIF of a Dunkin Donuts iced coffee flashing different colors]
Turns out seven Dunkin Donuts in a town of 20,000 people is not the norm.

4. You’re maybe a little too excited to share customs and cuisines from where you grew up with the new people in your life.

the legend of sleepy hollow lunch GIF
[image description: GIF of basket overflowing with food]
I bring an extra carry-on whenever I go home just to fill with food to bring back.

5. You learn about the specific things that make this new place unique.

girls eating GIF
[image description: woman smiling with cake in her mouth]
New desserts? Yes, please.

6. You try new things.

rihanna interview GIF
[Image description: gif of Rihanna saying “And it’s hard to change and try new things, for me.]
Hot sauce is now a part of my life.

7. Going home is exciting for two seconds and then you’re bored.

bored alice in wonderland GIF
[image description: gif of Alice from Alice in Wonderland resting her head on her hand, bored]

8. Your parents are always asking you about when you’ll be home.

the goldbergs mom GIF by TV Land
[image description: gif of a blonde woman on the phone saying “Hi nub nub’]

9. When you go home you have to catch up with way too many people in way too short of a time frame.

group hug GIF
[image description: gif of group hug from Golden Girls]
“Hi! I love you! Bye!”

10. You realize that most of the people who say they’ll visit won’t.

looking where are you GIF by The Academy Awards
[image description: gif of woman searching a crowd]
“I’ve always wanted to go to ________! I’ll come visit you!”

11. You realize that’s probably for the best.

mtv 90s GIF
[image description: gif of person crawling into fort, closing the door and reading]
Having visitors is actually exhausting.

12. You get to celebrate new holidays and festivals.

mardi gras GIF
[image description: Big Freedia walking in a parade saying “oh yaaaassss”]
Mardi Gras is a game changer.

13. You gain a new appreciation for the food where you grew up.

full house eating GIF
[image description: young child eating hug plate of spaghetti]
It’s just not the same anywhere else.

14. You start to staunchly defend things about where you grew up that you used to feel indifferent about.

you are wrong win GIF
[image description: gif of person running up to someone in a parking lot and throwing a stack of paper at them with the caption “FACTS”]
It’s called a rotary, not a traffic circle, not a roundabout. End of discussion.

15. Half of your wardrobe is no longer relevant in your new climate.

clothing GIF
[image description: dog wearing clothes walking on hind legs down a sidewalk]
Welp, guess you gotta go shopping!

16. Your slang becomes a hybrid of the different places you’ve lived.

what is fetch mean girls GIF
[image description: lunchroom scene from Mean Girls in with the text “What is fetch?” “Oh, it’s like slang, from England”]
I’ve used “y’all” and “wicked” in the same sentence.

17. You get homesick like never before…

nicksplat doug GIF
[Image description: GIF of cartoon saying “I am so homesick.”]
Like when you miss an entire season you grew up with. RIP fall.

18. …and your appreciation for where you grew up reaches a whole new level. 

happy criterion collection GIF by FilmStruck
[image description: gif of woman gazing out at a vista in awe]
Home is maybe the best?

19. You feel conflicted about what sports teams you should be cheering for.

confused larry david GIF
[image description: A man looking confused, cycling through facial expressions]
Go…team? IDK!!!

20. You feel like an expert when someone from home comes to visit and you get to be their tour guide.

cmt segway GIF by The Ed Bassmaster Show
[image description: gif of Segway tour guide rocking back and forth with megaphone]
Here are all of my favorite places in alphabetical order.

21. You still feel like a newbie sometimes even years after you relocate.

confused which way GIF
[image description: GIF of Spongebob, a cartoon, with arms pointing in all directions and wrapping around each other]
Wait, where am I?