Traveling opens your life to a whole new world and helps you become a better person.
If you’ve moved a lot as a kid, you certainly have a lot of interesting experiences, stories, and anecdotes that enable you to grasp things with greater ease than many people who didn’t have this incredible opportunity. But let’s be frank: we didn’t necessarily feel that way back then. Here’s what every person who’s moved countries as a kid understands.
1. You Made Lot A Friends While Traveling
Moving as a kid has its own cool factor. Concretely, that means you have way more friends than anybody else on FB, and from many more countries that they’ve ever been to – combined.
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2. You Realize That School Terms Vary Widely Around The World
Sadly, it all went downhill once you realized you still had to go to school: Wait? We’re abroad, doesn’t that qualify as a holiday?
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3. Learning Is Liberation
It wasn’t too soon until you realize that school isn’t as bad – when you speak the language. Try learning History, geography, SCIENCES or even music in a different language makes you realize that normal kids just don’t know how good they have it.
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4. Not Speaking The Language Is Awful
Not being able to watch anything on TV because you don’t speak the language is a real life problem
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5. You Might Still Feel Attached To Your Own Culture
Binging on the same DVDs from your own country because that’s all you understand is something you never complained about
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6. You Understood MTV Music Was A Sort Of “Cultural Imperialism”
You’re convinced that’s why MTV was doing so well back then: 100% music videos = global reach
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7. Traveling Taught You Resourcefulness
If anything, your cultural experiences taught you one thing: resourcefulness. Yep, that’s right. You used a VPN way before anyone even heard the word. MUST NOT MISS MY SHOWS!!!
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8. Moving Countries Also Made You Feel Entitled
It also made you more demanding. Becoming very annoyed when all the VPN sites started charging a subscription
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9. And You Discovered The Magic Of Skype Before Anyone Else
Getting scolded by your parents for expensive international phone calls only intensified your fondness for Skype.
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10. Living Abroad Made You Understand That With Math, As With Everything Else, All Roads Lead To Rome
You know for a fact that there’s nothing universal about solving equations. Five teachers, five countries, five totally different ways of finding x. Isn’t maths supposed to be a constant, people?!
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11. You Realized That Levels Of Education Are Unequal In Most Countries
Being the new kid sucks. Until you realize that having studied the same subjects at your old school means you can just sit back and relax and still get an A+ every single time.
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12. Nobody Can Master Your Native Language As You Do
Using your skills to your advantage. The one class you loved at school? Your own language – as a second language. No. Study. Required. EVER!!!
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13. Packing Your Belonging Very Often Sucks!
Packing sucks. You know it first-hand: you always end up losing something when you move!
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14. People Lacked Imagination
When you traveled a lot, you were always being asked if “your father was a diplomat.” They could not fathom that my father could have tons of jobs besides being a diplomat. Is that the only job for someone who lives overseas? Although I wouldn’t mind some of that diplomatic immunity!
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15. People Still Lack Imagination
Still true today. As a grown-up, you’re constantly getting that question every time you tell your friends that you moved a lot as a kid. Give me a break…
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16. Traveling Helps You Become A Polyglot
You went to school at the closest international school to the city where you lived. You know that the kids of diplomats speak at least 5 languages by age 7. True story.
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17. Your Parents Gave You The First Lesson About “Framing Of Discourse” and How “News” Can Be Far Away From Reality
Your parents weren’t 100% honest when they sold you on the program. Forget the part where moving countries would help you “become more mature” and “see things most people never see in their lifetime”, “the food” is definitely not something you signed up for when your parents decided they were taking the family to a new country. In my case, that was Belgium and the Netherlands. Frikandel, braadworst and kroket? No, thank you!
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18. However, Moving Still Made You Wise
But then again, moving countries as a kid made you wise enough to understand that there’s good and bad in every culture. Belgium + The Netherlands = Sugar waffles, hot oliebollen, and the world’s greatest French fries!
19. You Learned About Currency Values And Exchange Rates
It also made you develop unusual quirks. Like obsessively checking the daily exchange rate of your home- and new countries’ currency when your hometown friends were still busy playing Pokemon.
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20. Living Abroad Made You More Skilled In Currency Conversions
You got to understand that we really do all need a carrot. In your case, your love for maths all begun when you had to convert the Christmas money you got from you grandparents’ into the local country’s currency.
21. Moving Makes You A Pragmatic Thinker
Moving countries as a kid made you quite the pragmatic thinker. When your countries announced the switch to the Euro, you remember that your very first thought was: “That makes total sense!”
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22. Traveling Also Makes You Discover Your True Self
You are a capitalist at heart, and it all began at an early age. When your countries announced the switch to the Euro, your second thought was actually: “I’m going to save so much money on fees!”. Meanwhile, the Press deplored that 99% of the foreign exchange specialists would be out of work.
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23. And Living Abroad Made You Understand That Languages Embodied Different Realities And Worlds
Most people don’t see reality as it truly is, they only see reality as their languages are. Moving countries made you gain a true appreciation of the Babel story. For you, speaking your mother tongue with your siblings was always a delight: no one ever knew what you were saying, and you always got away with saying very nasty things to people to their face without their even realizing it.
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24. Moving Also Made You Sensitive To The Unfairness Of “Change”
You know for a fact that changing your mind is a sign of maturity: Fighting with your parents to not to leave home at first, and then fighting again to make sure you wouldn’t move another time when you finally made friends, is something you did quite often yourself.
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25. Traveling Made You Understand That “Normal” Does Not Exist. “Normal” Is Only A Language Fabrication That Favors Certain Power Structures
Redefining normal. You knew back then your childhood was not normal. And it may have taken you a while, but you’re feeling incredibly grateful for that today.