Then one of my friends pointed out that even if I didn't think I'd experience culture shock in Honduras, I'd definitely be experiencing it 4 days before when I got back to the States. And he's right.
So, I actually thought about the "Handling Culture Shock" section and applied it to my move back to the U.S.
So today, I'd like to share what my trip guide says about how to handle the inevitable culture shock. I won't share everything because I don't want to deprive the "future-sponsor-trip-goers" of that section in their trip guides. ;-)
Here are three of the seven symptoms that the guide had listed:
- a strong desire to be back home
- unwillingness to learn the language
- frustration over differences in the country
Now, I already speak English so I don't have to worry about that second point but I may be unwilling to learn how to use an ATM machine or put gas in a car. Those are some of the things that I will have to learn as I become a more independent adult.
Overcoming Culture Shock
- Health and processing
As I move back to the U.S. and say goodbye to Niger for probably a very long time, these 3 points are extremely vital. I do not consider the U.S. my "home" or my "home-country" so it will be hard to accept that I'll have to call it one for a while. But I am so thankful that even though I will be leaving behind friends, "family", my house, my pets and my favorite foods, I will still have GOD and my FAMILY. God is already helping me through the culture shock and the transitioning.
Communication is probably the biggest thing for me to get used to because I either don't deal with things or I just keep them to myself. I'll need to learn to voice my feelings and concerns with my family and with my friends.
If any of my readers are about to experience culture shock or a something new, please share below in the comments and I'll be sure to pray for you!
How can you pray for me?
Please pray for . . .
- my parents and all the choices they will have to make about moving back to the States and saying goodbye to Niger
- my brother who is graduating pretty soon and is also dealing with having to say goodbye to his home
- all the mixed feelings I have about saying goodbye, moving back to the US, traveling to Honduras and going to college. There's a lot to think about and process
- me to continue to draw near to God. He is the only one who is fully capable at getting me (and my family) through all of this