Moving can be scary and intimidating. It may feel like you must start over, start from scratch, rebuild your life. It is overwhelming for anyone no matter what age. In the article, “How Many Times Does the Average Person Move,” an individual can move up to 11.7 times in their lifetime. It’s a crazy number to think about especially when paired with the statistic that 28 million Americans move annually. It is way more common than you may previously have thought.
Mikah Bass, a current UNCG student, moved all the way from Turkey where she had grown up prior to 2017. She moved during her senior year of High School. She spoke on her experiences and the challenges that she had to overcome. “When I first moved to the states…it felt like the world had been flipped upside down with no directions. I just felt very lost, I was in a blur. I felt disoriented and I didn’t feel like I belonged…,” she said.
When asked about advice to give others, Bass stated, “Trust your instinct…don’t be embarrassed when you don’t know something. Don’t be afraid to ask questions so you’re not just sitting there in the dark.” Moving can be a confusing and stressful time particularly when everything feels foreign. Some might resort to staying in their own bubbles, but it’s okay to ask for help from others.
Bass went on to discuss ways that helped her personally throughout the moving process. “What helped me was my family, they were able to discuss with me what was odd to us. We shared the same shock about moving to the states. I was able to talk to them. I also got a counselor when I came. I just needed to talk through it, and it was really great to talk to someone,” she said.
Bass concluded, “I had this determination that I can keep my culture alive. When you move, you feel like you will never go back there again. That’s who I am and it’s a part of me that I don’t ever want to forget. That’s why I still make Turkish breakfast for myself and listen to Turkish music. When I did that, I felt more grounded, I didn’t sacrifice who I was to fit into this culture. Once you bring your culture with you and remember who you are, then it’s a lot easier.”
Moving can feel different for everyone. The important thing to remember is to not lose touch of who you are when you move. Find places that suite your personality. Find a community you want to be a part of whether that being a reading club, sports club or something else. Our experiences shape us into who we are.