365 Days

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June 17, 2016

Yesterday was my one year anniversary with Europe. It feels incredible and strange and unbelievable all at the same time. I remember the day I left so well, not just because I wrote it down, but because I don’t think it’s possible to forget something so significant. I remember the toilet flooded and how the morning was spent trying to soak up all the water from the floor with towels. I remember I ate a leftover sausage for lunch and how I sat outside on the new deck, wishing I could sit there a little longer. And I remember driving away from home, wanting to cry and trying not to.

365 days is a long time. It’s been 365 days since I hugged my mom. 365 days since I got a good-morning kiss on my head from my dad. 365 since I held my grandma’s hand or sat in the car with my sisters. 365 days.

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On day number 1, when I arrived in Berlin and settled down in my bed for my first sleep away from home, I could never have predicted how day number 365 would feel waking up in my bed in Paris. I just looked through some photos — all of the things that I’ve seen and done — and smells came back to me, and feelings rushed upon me, and for the first time in my life, I felt wiser. I have been waiting, seemingly forever, for a growth spurt, and I think I finally got it. It didn’t come in gaining height as I imagined it would – it came in gaining wisdom and in gaining experience. Thinking back to every moment where I stood completely lost, or lonely, or scared, dragging around a suitcase that was too heavy for me, surrounded by people I didn’t know speaking languages I didn’t understand, I realize that all those moments in which I felt that I was made too small for this world, I really wasn’t. Well, maybe I was made a little too small, but that was probably only so that I had a reason to grow. Now that I’ve had my growth spurt, I think I’m just the right size.

I know the world is far from perfect, but I still believe that it’s good and I still love it, and I fall a little bit more in love with it each passing day.

I have missed birthdays, and Christmas, milestones and little, every day moments, but I knew I would be sacrificing those things when I signed up for this.  I keep looking back to the last picture I took with my family. My hair is longer now and my denim top has two holes in the elbows which means I should probably throw it out, but I know the real change in me is invisible to the naked eye.  People always say you are supposed to do the thing that scares you. Sometimes I don’t understand why I’ve been so afraid of change — I would be more disappointed in myself right now if I hadn’t changed. Yes, I am grateful that in 365 days the world has changed me — for the better – and I hope that one day, I’ll be able to repay the favour and somehow change the world.

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Kazandra Pangilinan

Kazandra is probably not that different from you. She eats, sleeps,and wonders about how to make the most of this life. This blog is dedicated to the trials and triumphs she has experienced in the process of growing up in her quest to find meaning, connection and happiness.

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2 comments on “365 Days
  1. Annan says:

    Hi, I find your blog really, really interesting. At the same time, I am curious how could you travel around Europe like that? Job? School? 😀

    Hope to read more of your adventures!

  2. Kazandra Pangilinan says:

    HI Annan,
    Sorry for the late response! I was travelling and had computer issures…hence why I also haven’t updated my blog in forever 😛 I decided to take a break from work. After graduating university, I worked a year and then booked my ticket to Europe. I also decided to Aupair in Berlin, Madrid, Rome and Paris which was a great way to move around the continent!! Hope that helps!!

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