First Afraid, Now Fascinated

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An empty house with white walls, filled with boxes covered in brown packing tape is all that’s left of a place that was once my home. It’s packed with sweaty movers loading my memories into a U-Haul van -- a scene I would become accustomed to my entire life.

A large part of my identity comes from my father’s work. Growing up as a military child has had its struggles; constantly uprooting my life hasn’t always been enjoyable, but it’s an experience that I wouldn’t trade for the world. When I was thirteen, my family was stationed in Garmisch-Partenkirchen. Having never been outside the country and afraid of the unknown, I was adamantly opposed to moving to Germany. However, my current self would have to admit to my angsty thirteen year-old self that living in Europe has given me an eye-opening experience and a belief in the importance of travel.

I have been to chapels in Italy, castles in Romania and temples in South Korea. Not only have I seen beautiful sights in the twenty countries I have traveled to, but learning about the history and encountering other cultures has caused a curiosity about the world to awaken within me. In certain suburbs, I have seen people live their lives in bubbles, seemingly unaware of the drastically...

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