Saturday, March 13, 2010

It's about time

I've been living in India since July 18, 2005.

It's been almost five years and I haven't really spoken about my experience to anyone in detail.
I end up hating it when I go back home and everyone's all, "How's India" on me. My time here is coming to an end rather quickly and I haven't really spoken much of it. I think the main reason is that I didn't really like living here. It was hard to adjust socially, and then the stress of medical school combined with the third world experience made me like it less and less.

I finally get to go home soon. Permanently. But a part of me isn't that excited. Despite the long list of complaints I have about this country, it has been my home for the past 5 years. You can't throw away five years like that. Well, the good at least. The friends that I have made, the weather, the hospitality.

Living in a different country is completely different from visiting one in a lot of ways. For one thing, when one is visiting a country you don't notice a lot of stuff. Like how it takes over a month to clear a foreign check. Or worrying about the maid stealing all your stuff. or going without water for three days because the tanker didn't come by. Or how everything a lot of things are shut down multiple times a month because of holidays. Or how if you need to get one thing done, you need to put aside ten days for it to happen.

Enough complaining. I'm going to start writing and share as much of my experience here with you guys as possible. A lot of them are LOL funny. This one is kind of boring but people always ask me why I decided to move so I'll start there.

Rewind to Winter 2003/2004.

I was finishing up high school and my dad brought up the idea of med school in India. "Hell to the no," I decided initially. But when it came to decide what college I wanted to go to after receiving my acceptance letters my dad brought it up again. He never ever forced me. He just mentioned it and the perks about it, like living in a new country and gaining experience with the outside world. How I can skip undergrad completely and finish four or more years earlier than everyone else my age. Or how I can get a chance to get to know my family back home. Etcetera. He asked me a few times that year and I always declined the offer, but something inside me always wanted him to ask me again. but I wouldn't ask him about it.

Skip to Winter 2005. Life was good. I had an amazingly fun time at college and met the people who are very very close to me to this day. {some of the authors on the blog..I still can't believe you guys feel like family after knowing each other for less than a year} I was doing dietetics/nutrition. And I was trying to figure out what to do with my nutrition major. I was interesting but I don't think I'd have fun working as a dietitian.

I asked my dad. He basically said no matter what I decide to do, I should be the best in my field. And that if I'm going to give whatever I'm doing my very best then I should try out for med school. If you haven't guessed, Indians have about three options in life: you become a doctor, an engineer, or nothing (which is everything else). I was not interested in doing med school in America. I have zero interest in all the prerequisites. And it's so hard to get in. And there's no guarantee you'll make it. Yeah I sound like a wuss right now, but I don't like putting in so much if there's a huge chance my hard work will go to waste.

So anyways, my dad mentioned it again a few days later. I told him I'd think about it. And something inside me was telling me to go. People usually get these feelings for relationships and other emotional crap. I had a feeling I'd regret not going and then it'd be too late.

So my sister finished up high school and got talked into coming, too. It would be my mom, my sister and my two year old sister. My mom decided to move with us because no one would marry us if they found out we lived alone. True story. haha.

This was probably the scariest thing I've ever done. To just pack up and leave my life behind me to start a new thing, in a new place with new people is something I would never dream of doing.


Jane In The Jungle said...

Props to ya girl for that are brave!!

Little T said...

That is fantastic! Enjoy the rest of your time there. That is truly an amazing experience.

The Kid In The Front Row said...

This is a great post!

supreem said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
supreem said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Constructive Attitude said...

i didnt know about the "if you live alone no one would marry you" thing. wow. thats crazy. but i guess im not really surprised?

supreem said...

the worst question a person can ask you is 'how is____?' it's such a vague question. When I spent 8 months in Syria, that's all what people asked me, and it drove me crazy, because i was never able to answer it.
That was a really brave thing to do. Picking up and moving is one of the scariest things that a person can do. I'm sure you learned a lot from this experience.

Simply me said...

I can't wait to hear the rest of your stories! :)))

C said...

Will your Indian degree be accepted in the US? In Canada it wouldn't.

Falling Up said...

Thanks, everyone :)

CA - well I don't know if it's true, but here rumors fly and stuff. In America it wouldn't be a big deal. There are a lot of differences here. Explanations in the future.

Supreem - Me, too! I've been getting that for 5 years. That's the main thing I hate about going back.

C - Yeah, I just have to take the USMLEs like every other med student. Plus, my college is well recognized everywhere. Don't Indian students who go to Canada take an exam first?? I'm pretty sure I know doctors there who studied in India.

Artistic Logic said...

it passed by quickly (or so it seems to me but i know you had a rough 5 years) congrats congrats congrats on finishing (IA SOON)