Христос воскрес, my friends! Happy Easter! Buona Pasqua!
It's always been my favourite holiday for many, many reasons, and yet for the fifth time in a row I celebrate it far away from my family. This is one of the saddest consequences of any type of migration.
I almost never speak about it here - just because I chose to look at the bright sides and be optimistic. But yes, there are sad things about not living in your own country, even the county as praised as Italy.
For examples, not being able to celebrate your mum's birthday with her, or see your friend that just had her first child, or get the exact ingredients you need to make Ukrainian dumplings. Or not going home for holidays.
I still remember my first ever Easter all by myself - sitting in my under the roof room in Chiang Mai, watching Death in Paradise and eating my sad sweet bun - the closest thing to our traditional Easter cake that I managed to find in the supermarket.
Now, four years later, I think I've managed to find some ways to make lonely holidays more pleasurable:
- Don't think of it too much
Doesn't seem like a real advice, but it thinking happy thought instead of sad and depressing ones really helps me.
- Reward yourself with your favourite food
Most of the holidays have some foods connected to it. Respect it! Sometimes planning and cooking it can also put you in a happy and calm state of mind, Especially when you can share this food with someone.
- Find your tribe and love them hard
I know this phrase is a bit of a cliche, but I don't think anything else can sum it up better. In my experience when you are a foreigner, you find even more joy in hanging out with other foreigners - it just happens, as you already feel like you have something in common. During the holidays, when you might feel lonely because most of your local friends are spending time with their families, remember that you are not the only person in this position. Ask your fellow foreigners what are their plans for the holidays and organise a nice dinner party.
- Make your own party/dinner/brunch
During my EVS year most of us chose to stay in Palermo for Christmas and we had the best Christmas dinner ever - everyone cooked the food from his/her own country and received a gift from a Secret Santa. Or, if your holiday is not celebrated in the country you are living in, even better - you can organise something very special and share your tradition with others. I find myself in this situation almost every year, as we in Ukraine celebrate Orthodox Easter, and I live in a Catholic country *
* Easter is celebrated on a different day each year, and it's also different for Catholics and Orthodox people. Sometimes the date will be the same (like, f.e., this year), but sometimes the difference can be quite big (last year it was more than one month).
I hope some of this advises were helpful and that you all had a great Easter celebration.
Hugs, kisses, and see you next time!