My experience studying abroad, its downfalls and its perks.

In this day and age, studying out of your country is not as uncommon as it was 100 years ago, and I am one of the lucky people to have gotten the chance to study abroad in a completely different country than my two own.

I have moved several times before going to study abroad, but it was mostly within Spain, and finally when I was 16 my family and I moved to Romania. I was really looking forward to study out of the two countries I had already lived in, I am so used to moving around that after 4 years in Romania I was looking for the next stop.

In all honesty I tried hard and prepared as much as I could for my auditions in the different conservatoires; time, effort, work and money was invested. The last audition I did back in 2015 was in The Netherlands. The period of admissions had ended, however the school invited me to audition to some entry exams that had been moved to June because of a mishap in administration (leaving certain applicants without their date and hour for their exams). Despite not being sure whether I had a shot or not, I did my exam and they accepted me.

I first told Iliyan, then my singing teacher and finally my mom, they all played an important part in the process of getting into a conservatory to pursue my dreams.

So I got here! What happened after?

Studying a piece for my piano exam while Iliyan took pictures of me.

Well, they already had told me it would be hard the first year, many hours of work, new subjects, moving into a new country, homework, etc. So I was prepared mentally for that, but once it actually hit me I realized it was harder than I thought, emotionally I had days I felt quite down.

My motivation to sing disappeared completely, I had no idea what I was doing here.

By the time the first big holiday came (Christmas) I really did not want to go back. In a way it felt like something was pulling me from Iliyan’s arms, towards something that I disliked. However, I worked hard to get here, so of course I did end up going back to Holland, saying my bitter goodbyes to my fiancé and family.

I continued working and doing my best while still having certain days in which I really wished I did not have to face any of it. The stress of the conservatoire and being away from Iliyan and anything remotely familiar, was the main reason that I had these hard days, those are in a way natural, but it made the whole journey of my studies hard.

Iliyan has been my main support in this, and it was thanks to him that slowly the whole scene of studying abroad changed… Because I rediscovered my motivation in one of the trips I made to see him. Since then I have had an energy to push me to do better, to organize wisely, to do things in time so I do not stress in the last minute, etc.

Studying French with one of my closest friends at the conservatoire.

And that was also when I started to see better all the benefits of studying in a different country: Meeting and working with many different people, having to stand on your own two feet as an adult —knowing you can do it—, getting the knowledge that will enable you to work in what you want or satisfy your brain’s desire to learn something you like, taking every opportunity that can give you wings once you are out of the university and so on.

In one of my previous posts I talked about our experience on living together for a month, this gave me a huge boost for the second year in my studies. Because I might be here now, studying everyday far away from Iliyan, but one day I know I will be living with him and it will be awesome, so I give more than my best to get through this phase in my life.

Your passion and motivation is one of the key factors to keep you pursuing your studies with a strong heart despite being in a strange country. So whatever it is that gives you strength to continuing to kick asses, grab it tightly and continue your journey in life studying what you want.

My attire for my first year singing exam. I felt both nervous and pretty, all went well for now I am in my second year.

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