Pierre in Paris

Today, the first day of October, marks a month. A month of a “new normal” filled with new sights, experiences, cultures and stories. It’s been one month since I landed in Paris, France, and what a month it has been.


This has been one of the hardest months of my life. Getting acquainted with this “new” normal while also managing the “old” normal for me was difficult to balance.


I often found myself having feelings of discomfort, confusion, frustration and loneliness. Mentally and emotionally, it was tough for me to truly figure out how I was feeling toward everything. There were so many factors that played a role and it was a lot to feel and process.


Days seemed long and nights longer, filled with just myself, my thoughts, and my feelings. Navigating all of this and processing what I needed to was difficult, but it had to be done. I am continually working through this in a positive and healthy way by being present in every moment–being present where I am.


Since I landed in Paris, I worked to be more intentional about this concept of being present in each and every moment. That allowed me to see, process and feel what was present in that moment. It showed me that the purpose of life is not to be caught up in what is happening around you.


The purpose of life is not what you do in life, but what you do with life. It is about how you live for you.


In my journal entry I wrote: “There is no comfort in growth. So to combat this feeling of discomfort, you have to be present in it. You have to embrace the discomfort to accept the growth to ultimately enjoy the experience. That is living for you. That is purpose.”


As I have lived here for a month now, I can say I have enjoyed every minute of this experience. Through the negative and the positive aspects, I am truly enjoying every bit of where this experience has taken me. It has certainly taken me to some amazing places.


I have been all over the city to visit all 20 arrondissements, where the most popular monuments and “must-sees” are here in Paris. Much of the area surrounds Pathé City and the local boulangerie, where I stopped at least 25 times for a fresh croissant.


So far, my favorite experiences have certainly been visiting the world-famous gardens at the Palace of Versailles and attending the France versus Austria football (soccer) match at the Stade de France along with the Paris Saint- Germain versus Nice match at the Parc des Princes. My favorite experience by far was spending a day fully immersed in African culture in Paris with a majority West African population.


Outside of my explorations, I have found myself living a childhood dream of playing soccer in a different country after making the university’s football team. I will be traveling all inside and outside of Paris to play the sport.


I have been able to do and see a lot since I’ve come to Paris. The best part is that it has only been one month. I am excited to see where the next three months take me.