Okay, I’m going to have to try to keep this post from becoming an entire novel, but I simply have SO much to talk about! Because of this, I will be talking about some of the related things (like the language and working as an au pair) in separate posts.
Without further ado, let’s jump right into this!
Moving abroad is a huge decision, especially for someone as young as me. When I left College in Denmark (called a Gymnasium), I initially wanted to find a normal job and build up my savings. I had thought about becoming an au pair before, but I was too scared to really do something about it. However, after 3 failed job interviews and many more unanswered job applications, I figured I might as well try to find an au pair job in Britain. I knew I wanted to go to an English-speaking as I didn’t want to have to deal with a big language barrier, and the UK has always appealed to me culture- and language-wise.
After talking to about 10 different families, I found my favorite and told them they were at the top of my list of families I wanted to live with. It turned out that I was at the top of their list of au pairs as well, and soon enough everything was decided and my plane ticket bought.
But before you move abroad there is a long list of things you need to know (many of which I’ve forgotten and now I’m kind of just winging it). You need to know about insurances, healthcare, taxes, laws, visas etc. There’s about enough things to fill up an entire lexicon. You will likely have many questions, however nowhere will you be able to find a complete and proper set of answers. Every website or person you ask has a different set of answers for you. But don’t panic! It’ll probably work out in the end. I just remember to have all my important documents printed out and put in a folder, so I always know where to find them.
I pretty much started packing my suitcases (yes, plural) a week before my flight, I was THAT excited! I was so afraid of forgetting anything important, so I had laid out everything on my brothers big and unoccupied bed to be sure that I had everything.
This is what it looked like:
But of course I did forget something, which my lovely mum then sent to me in a package a few weeks later.
My family has never been big on going on holidays far away, so I didn’t have much experience with flying, and I had never flown by myself before, so I was terrified to go through security by myself for the first time!
I made it though, and I was picked up my host dad in Birmingham airport. We drove a little over an hour to get to Shrewsbury, where I was met by two very excited children and my lovely host mum. I feel so blessed to have been allowed into the home of this lovely family!
When you move abroad you will quickly need two things: A new sim card for your mobile and a bank account, so be prepared to go and have a nice long chat at a foreign bank, with a foreign person, speaking a foreign language. Good luck!
I don’t know how you’d do everything on your own, but I can tell you that having a host family to support you and advise you is absolutely lovely.
Moving abroad teaches you a lot of things if you are ready to learn them. I came here to learn that sometimes it is okay to not be in control. I am a huge control freak and I feel extremely uncomfortable in an unknown situation. Moving abroad by yourself also forces you to get out and meet new people, which I’ve not been too good at tbh. I’ve got a few friends here, but meeting new people is now one of my strengths… I’ve still got to work on that.
There is one thing I’ve become so much better at by moving here, and that is eating. I’ve gone from a sugar-addicted vegetable-hater to an almost all-eating fruit-lover! I never thought I’d stop being a picky eater, but coming to a new place and living with new people has helped me change my mindset towards trying different foods, and I’m so proud of myself for that!
When moving abroad don’t forget to explore the area you live in! Here in the county of Shropshire, there is a lot of lovely old buildings and lots of beautiful nature to see.
Here is a picture from Carding Mill Valley here in Shropshire:
When you move abroad there will likely be a big cultural change from what you’re used to, but this is one of the most exciting things about moving abroad. You get to learn a very different way of living and different ways of acting in certain situations and around certain people. Even though Denmark and England are both North-Western European Countries, there are many cultural differences. So many, that I’ll have to put it in a post of it’s own.
I could go on and on and on, but I think I’ll end this post now with saying this: I love the UK and it will always have a special place in my heart. ❤