I can still remember the day I arrived in Finland. It was the 18th day of January 2011. The place was covered with snow and it was very cold. I was so happy and excited that I finally arrived here and be with the guy I believed was meant for me. It was like a dream. Fast forward today. That dream was still a dream sort of. I can’t believe it’s been four years since I moved here. Four years of living with my husband. Four years of living in the other side of the world far away from where I came from, far away from my family. Four years of happiness and nightmares, of excitement and of courage. Four years as an expat in Finland. So many things happened in the last four years.
I have survived four winters. Have Experienced spring, summer and autumn. I’m proud of myself for being brave and strong. There’s no joke in living in a foreign land not knowing anyone except your husband and his family. Now I feel like I’m a superwoman. Of course I wouldn’t be here now without the support of my husband. He was there through thick and thin. He was really the man I was praying for. He was very supportive.
When I first came here. I always thought what would happen to me. Will I survive? Will I reach a year or more here? Now the answer is yes! And I did. Four years isn’t a joke right? I’m not an innocent girl anymore. I’ve grown so much here. I learned to become independent woman, strong and courageous.
Four years isn’t as hard as before. Now I have my own family. Gained new friends. I’m learning the language and hopefully find a decent job someday . I can say that my life is already here in Finland. I’ve built my own family and I’m happy of having one.
Finland is such a beautiful country. It’s a great privilege to be able to live here. When I first come here I honestly didn’t know anything about the country. I’m glad I’m still here now and I would love to live here as long as I can. Their government is really great and I love how they take care of their people. I love the scenery in Finland whether it’s winter, spring, summer or autumn. The nature is really beautiful! It’s also very clean and peaceful country.
Now looking back, let’s walk down memory lane through photos!
… the day I arrived. Photo taken at the airport and a car ride going to Loviisa.
…. first winter in Finland. Can you tell how tiny I was when I first arrived here?….
…. My first Spring in Finland…
… This was the day we found out we were pregnant. We went to this mountain near the power plant where hubby works. It’s a nice place for camping and picnic. We’ve planned to come here someday!
…And my first Summer in Finland…
… First birthday I celebrated in Finland. We spent the day exploring Helsinki.
… And lastly, the reason why I come here. To marry this guy!
I came here with a tourist visa and managed to get my residence permit a month later. That’s the time I decided to stay here for good. So many things happened in four years. It’s not easy being an expat in Finland due to the cold weather, cultural differences and language barrier, but I am happy I survived all of it.
Anyway, I should maybe stop considering myself as an expat in Finland because Finland is my home now!