[31 Days] Day 12 Adjust

It’s Day 12 of the 31 Days in the Life of a TCK series! Welcome! You can find more info on the series here.

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I knew this day had to come eventually, but I still wasn’t ready for it. 
No matter how much you prepare, it still hits you out of the blue. 
Culture shock.

The first months in South Africa were full of adventures. 

Every day I met new people, enjoyed driving on the left side, all the delicious food, or having late night conversations with my housemates. 
We had made us a home in this little wooden house, and all being away from loved ones around the globe we had become a family. 

And then they all left. 

Some went back home ay the end of their terms, other were reassigned to another base. Within two weeks our little community changed and I was by myself. 
And hit by a wave of culture shock, homesickness, and anger. 
Out of a sudden I resented everything.

photo credit: Ruth van Reken

In the transition process there are several stages and we need to go through all of them. There’s no recipe how long it will take, but we sure can’t skip one stage.
There is a time of excitement, newness, enjoyment. 

But after an initial honeymoon phase we hit the rock bottom of reality and suddenly feel overwhelmed by culture, people, everything. 
It’s definitely the toughest phase, and yet we need to live through it to get to re-adjustment and realizing that there’s life there after all. 

The key word is transition PROCESS, and as hard as living through it often is we hopefully will experience the depth that comes with it.


How did you live through transition – what was particularly hard and what helped you?

Author: Katha von Dessien

Teacher. Believer. Third Culture Kid. World Traveler. People Lover. Writer.

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