On a Serious Note: What I Wish I Could Tell Everyone9:40 PM
Normally I try to keep my blog pretty cheery, definitely playing up the good stuff, but there's something I feel like I need to say to people I interact with, and anyone who's ever around a foreign exchange student. Its not easy to say this to someone's face and writing has always come easier to me than making a speech. So here are some things I wish I could tell people about being an exchange student, my experience in particular.
1) Being an exchange student isn't easy.
A lot of the time, its really really hard. Not only do you have to adjust to a new culture, climate and daily routine, but you have to do so without your family and friends by your side. Which leads me to
2) I'm sorry for crying.
Most of the time, it's nobody's fault. Sometimes the combination of being so far from home mixed with the pressure of trying to ensure that my host family and classmates like me is really overwhelming. Sometimes it feels like no one really likes me here and that everyone is forgetting me back in New York. Crying doesn't solve anything, but sometimes it's good to let it out.
3) Please don't judge a book by its cover.
Especially when that book is me and the cover is a first impression. It's been said that exchange makes people talk in all clichés, and this one holds so true. It's not fair to hold a grudge against someone because of what your friend said about them or because of what country they're from. Which leads into
4) Exchange students have feelings too.
Lately I've been dealing with a lot of problems at school. People talk about me behind my back, others overhear and then they tell me. I've been told that I'm a freak, weird, uncommunicative, mean, scary and that I make people cry. It may be the global nature of teenage girls to be catty, but that's not an excuse. As hard as I try to laugh the insults off, they still hurt. A lot. Especially because many of them come from people I don't even know. These people know only my name and where I'm from, yet they find it necessary to criticize and hurt me. I wish I knew why.
5) I can tell when you're talking about me.
If you're looking right at me, and saying something, its pretty obvious. Please just tell me if you have a problem. I'd rather have someone let me know what's wrong rather than having to wonder about what
the heck you just said and why on earth you're suddenly laughing at me. Leading off of this
6) Don't be scared of me!
I don't bite and even if I did I've gotten all my necessary vaccines. I love having conversations with new people or people I've talked to before. I love talking in general. And finally
7) I'm a normal teenager.
I stress about grades and school. I talk to my friends about cute guys. I worry far too much about the future rather than living in the present.
I still love Malaysia, I just had to get that off my chest.