Why living abroad is not the ultimate achievement of your life
I’ll make it simple. When I moved to Sweden with my partner I got lots of “congratulations" from family and friends — it’s not my birthday, I thought, but ok. In Brazil, (lots of) people believe that the most amazing thing that can possibly happen in your life is living abroad.
Don’t get me wrong, I am not being indifferent and this is not a “saudade” text, it is simply a reflection. The fact is that we didn’t want that bad to live abroad. The opportunity found us and we decided to go for the adventure. And I am truly happy and grateful that we are having this chance. But the thing is… I was happy and grateful when I lived in Brazil as well — even considering the problems of my beloved country.
We were lucky enough to live in a calm city. We had our own place (still paying for the next 30 years or so) — modest but awesome, full of love! Friends and family were always nearby or in a reasonable distance. We had good jobs (nothing huge, but quite fair positions for young professionals — and inspiring talented colleges). We used to travel mainly to visit relatives, but once in a while we managed to save enough money for a short distance trip to somewhere else. On some occasions, we would gift ourselves with a nice dinner at a great restaurant. On most of them, though, being together and eating popcorn on our bed (we didn’t have a sofa) was more than enough for a perfect weekend. So, yes, life was nothing but good 😊💙
Some may think that we are (too) resigned people. Yes, we lack ambition. This is not that good because it can keep us stuck on our comfort zone and, therefore, prevent us from succeeding somehow (by the way, what is success?). On the other hand, having no ambition is a gift: you can enjoy the present more easily and gratitude becomes a daily feeling for everything that you have (are) — here and now.
I’ve been living in Sweden for four months now and, yes, it has been AMAZING! But you don’t really need to cross the ocean to feel that you have had the most mind-blowing/life-changing experience in the world.
Every day we are given the opportunity to reinvent ourselves and make the most of our experiences. If you dream about adventuring yourself in another country, great, go for it! But just keep in mind that the journey that really matters — the one from within — can happen anywhere. And this, at least for me, is the greatest journey of all.
Something about “saudade”… I miss Brazilian music!