Leaving everything that matters to you behind and moving abroad may be a difficult decision for many, after all, you are cutting your strings with what you know and love and have to start all over again. It’s sounds scary – and it is – but if you ask me, it also sound exciting. I’ve never been too attached to my roots. Don’t get me wrong. I’m very proud of where I’m from, and deeply grateful for the wonderful family and friends I’ve got. Still, that voice telling me to go out in the world and see what it has to offer me speaks louder. It always has. So it’s not surprising to say that my moving from Brazil to Orlando, Florida, wasn’t a hard, grieving process as it is for most foreigners arriving here.
I often listen to friends, or even friends of friends, telling me how brave I am for having come alone, without a job offer or anything, just to try and make it here. But the truth is, even though I appreciate the compliment, I don’t see it that way. I’ve been watching the show The Bold Type recently, and it’s made me realize that moving abroad doesn’t make you a bold person. I feel like my fears still control me, and my anxiety keeps making me focus on the things that I haven’t accomplished yet, instead of giving me credit for the ones I have.
The fact that I “crossed the ocean”, left my comforting home to start over in a new place should make you feel fearless to conquer the world. I had this in mind when I got here. I thought that I would see so much, do so much and, especially, share all of this in my blog, or my Youtube channel. My take on Disney, the parks, living in Florida… which I believed, and still do, that is different from everybody else’s. Of course I love the parks, and I’m quite aware that the hospitality industry is the strongest in Central Florida, but there’s so much more than this. Disney is not only a perfect vacation spot, but there’s a lot to talk about it that won’t hit the newspapers or won’t get that many views on Youtube. So when I arrived here and got a job, I was full of energy, eager to show the world everything that Orlando has to offer.
The reality’s sunk in since then and I understood that things wouldn’t be so easy as I figured. Which makes me come back to the Bold Type show. What does this even mean? Being bold? I’ve always pictured myself as a bold person, but after the first few months living in Orlando I kind of gave up. Not exactly gave up but left all the dreams and plans and ideas kept in a drawer, and it seems that they are still there, just waiting for me to do something about it.
I understand that many people go through the same thing, but not many people are like me: a Brazilian immigrant who’s decided to live in Orlando for being passionate about the American culture. I’ve met so many Brazilians here, but most of them came because they were trying to have a better life. Somehow, things were difficult for them in Brazil. But not for me. I have no complaints about the life I had in Brazil. I had a great job, the best friends and a lovely family that’s always supported me. I left because I was eager for the adventure. I left because I wanted to see news things, live new experiences, meet new people, and do things I’ve never thought I would.
What does it take to make it? How do you get out of your comfort zone and be bold? Where do you start?
I think I need to start by doing a bucket list. Trying to be specific may help understand what I really want to do and what it’s going to take to get it.
In the Freeform show I mentioned above, the character of Jacqueline says something in the first episode that resonated with me: “I expect you to fall in love, to get your hearts broken. I expect you to have sex with the wrong people, to have sex with the right people, to make mistakes and make amends, take a leap and make a splash. And I expect you to unleash holy hell on anybody who tries to hold you back.”
That’s what life is really about. It’s about making mistakes and making amends, doing the wrong things and then finding out what are the right things for you. It’s about putting yourself out there and taking risks.
Watch out, world. I’m coming for you!