Returning Home After Travelling: What It Feels Like

Returning Home After Travelling Drive

Before I left for Australia in August 2013, I had the recurring thought, “What will it feel like to return home after travelling?”

Will things have changed dramatically? I asked myself so many questions and was somewhat anxious that life back home would be so different when I got back.

What I found when I returned home was that it actually hadn’t changed at all.

When Sandy and I were planning to return to the UK the plan was that we would use England as a base where we would live and work while spending weekends exploring nearby countries.

The first couple of weeks after returning home were pretty busy; reunions with my family and friends, celebrating mine and Sandy’s birthdays in London and a pre-booked trip to Amsterdam.

However, after almost 8 weeks I realised I was crazy to think that I could settle back into my old life after the experiences I had abroad.

Returning Home After Travelling Sheffield
Showing Sandy around my home city of Sheffield.

When I returned home, I was having meals made for me, borrowing my mum’s car and living rent free which was great. But after a few weeks it felt like I was taking a massive step back into a cushty teenage life again, especially after gaining so much independence living abroad…I was feeling bored, anxious and restless.

I pondered over my thoughts and feelings and to be honest I felt I had to try and fit back in to an environment which initially made me want to go travelling in the first place.

I struggled to be myself back home because I had changed so much.

I had some great conversations with people who had also travelled but I got the impression that most people thought I was living in ‘Will’s Dreamworld’ and floating through life with no direction.

“So what are your plans after travelling?” Which is like asking someone who’s loving life, what they’re going to do when they stop loving life…I don’t know yet. I’ve barely even touched the surface of my travelling journey, so what’s the rush? I’m lucky to have some close people in my life who accept me for who I am… but trying to explain this to people who don’t understand my lifestyle makes me feel as though I have to justify myself, which becomes completely draining.

I was longing to be around people who have the same outlook on life.

After a couple more weeks had passed, we’d done our trips around the UK, I felt it was time to leave again…I hadn’t stretched myself this far to settle back in the same place as where I started. I needed to be somewhere unfamiliar.

We’re now in France and will be returning back to the UK for a week over Christmas, then heading off again. I’m sure future visits back home will become much easier over time, and at the end of the day home will always be home…It’s just not where I belong anymore.


Have you returned home after travelling before? How did you feel?

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6 thoughts on “Returning Home After Travelling: What It Feels Like

  1. Oh my, that sounds like one of my biggest fears. I have lived abroad for the past 10 years and I’m planning on dragging my husband there this year to live in Germany. I wonder if I will still fit in? I think I’ll probably fit in more with the expat community than with the the regular Germans. But we’ll see. I am looking forward to being close to family and friends after all these years and start a family of my own there. We’ll see how it goes 🙂

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