Saturday, February 28, 2009

And I'm proud to be an American!!

(gotta love that song, by Lee Greenwood!)

I just - finally - watched the inauguration of Barack Obama; how inspirational is he?

I have to say that in this month of huge change for me I have thought a lot about the United States and what it means to me. Moving to a completely new country with a foreign language and foreign culture is one of the most difficult things that I think a person can do. It is an exciting and amazing experience, but it is also full of challanges. The shear overload of new experiences - sights, smells, sounds, culture - can be exhausting. Nick and I were talking the other night about the emotional and mental stress we've felt over the last month and our individual culture shock experiences and he joked that sometimes he feels like moving to a new country is self-induced torture.

In some ways it is. Don't get me wrong, we are both really enjoying life right now and I'm so happy that we're doing this, but let me tell you, it is not easy. There are some days or hours or moments where I just am at my wits end. Sometimes the littlest thing can set me off or upset me and make me feel homesick. The whole experience has really given me a deep and profound respect for every immigrant who has come to the United States over the last 250+ years and made our country what it is today.

Those people had/have heart. That is why America is such an incredible country. Because our country is made up of people who left everything that they knew and loved to make a better life for themselves on US soil. These are good people; driven and brave people.

I have only come to Taiwan for the experience. I did leave everything I know - but only for a year or two. I know that I will go home again and live in my own country, and I am thankful for that. I can't imagine actually leaving everything I know and immigrating permanently. We should be proud of our heritage and history, it is quite inspirational.

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