Welcome :) můj výměna začíná nyní

Hello family, friends and other bloggers; I am Chelsea and I am a Rotary Exchange student! The purpose of this blog is to keep you updated on my exchange without having to email everyone all the time which would be impossible. I have had countless people ask me to email, write, send postcards etc and because I can't guarantee that I will do that, no matter how much I would love to, I thought you could simply come to this when you think about me to see how I'm doing. If it helps, my parents will likely be using this as a main source of how I am too.
For those of you who don't know or are curious to know more I will be traveling to the Czech Republic and living in a city called, Znojmo (za-noy-mo). It is a relatively small city but none-the-less it's a city! This is a lot more than I can say for Franklin. It is in the Southern Morovian region of Czech; it is apart of Bohemia and is less than an hour from Austria.
Check it out:

To be honest I'm not even sure when I fly out yet. I am still waiting on a Long Term Residence Permit which is basically the VISA for Czech Republic. So I'm still in America, I still haven't begun packing, and all I really know is that sometime between August 21st and August 30th I fly into Vienna, Austria where I will be whisked away to my new home. August 30th is my eighteenth birthday so hopefully I won't be an emotional mess.
So why start the blog now when I haven't even left yet? Well, simply because it's real now and I believe that when it becomes real it should be posted. When did it become real? It wasn't real a month ago, it wasn't real two weeks ago, it wasn't even real two days ago. It was real yesterday. It was real when I went with my boyfriend and his family to the airport where he began his exchange to Australia. It was real when I realized how nervous and fearful he was; when he began crying in my arms. It was real when the fact that I wouldn't see him for a year and that in a month or so I would be going through the same thing he was slapped me in the face. It was real when we exchanged our last kiss, our last "I love you" and I watched him go through security and round the corner to his gate. This is where the exchange gets difficult. This is the time that I begin to rely on this blog to help me control the way I am feeling and the tangle of emotions in my chest and stomach.
When I returned to the car from JFK I was left a lovely gift from him that comforted and made me laugh but when I returned home and was alone in my room and couldn't receive the nightly "goodnight, sweetdreams, I love you" text it hit me; it hit me hard. I wasn't going to see my best friend, my love, my confidant for a whole year! I have photos of him on my wall, my room still sort of smells like him, and all I wanted was something to let me know that he was fine but I couldn't have that. I tried listening to music, I tried snuggling with a stuffed animal he gave me, I tried taking deep breaths but nothing seemed to help. The music music reminded me of him more, the stuffed animal felt nothing like him, and the deep breaths came out staggered and turbulent. Finally, I turned to my mother who came and layed with me and held me and let me cry and cry into her arms. This was also very frightening! The first person I turned to was my mom! I wont be able to see her for a year either. Who will comfort me?! Who will understand how I'm feeling?! My brother was upset in his room and I went to help him; I wont be able to have a meaningful conversation with him for a year. I won't be able to help him when his friends are mean to him, when he can't sleep because he starts school the next day, or when he has night terrors! All of these things are totally and absolutely terrifying. So I admit it, I am officially scared to leave. I am scared to leave my comfort zone.
I'm certainly not complaining, I am so excited for the adventures that lie ahead. Yesterday watching him leave, even through the tears I couldn't help but jump up and down and constantly tell him how awesome and exciting and fantastic this is. I constantly reminded him that he was brave and amazing for doing this. I can't complain because I did this, I signed up for this, I chose this and I want this. I want this so much! I can't wait until it's my turn to say goodbye and go through security, and go to my gate and board the plane and land and meet my family who is talking in a strange language... No matter how much I can wait...Actually, I think the worst part about all of this is that I have to wait. With my boyfriend gone, my best friend touring America and soon leaving for her home country when she returns (which happens to be Czech), and my other best friend at college orientation for the week I am left here while my parents are at work and my eleven year old brother sleeps until noon. Writing this blog has helped me feel a thousand times better. Will this become a daily routine until I can cope with how I am feeling? Perhaps! It has been the only thing to provide relief to the strange things I have been feeling thus far. It became much more personal than I expected it but somehow I do not mind it. Somehow it's comforting to know that there are people out there that may read this and relate to the way I am feeling and be glad to know that they aren't the only ones; that there are people who may become insightful on the ways leaving home can make you feel and there are people who care about me who care to know this and who I would like to share this with individually but can't. If you read all of this thank you, I commend you because this turned out to be a lot longer than I expected :D

můj výměna začíná nyní -  my exchange begins now