Australia Abroad: packing your life away and saying goodbye

Michelle Buser

When I’m getting dressed in the morning, I always feel like I have nothing to wear, but when I start packing, I feel like everything in my closet has a use and is important.

Packing is the hardest part of any trip for me. I always feel the need to pack my entire room, only to later realize my bag is over 50 pounds. When I first started packing for this five-month


My comfort item is Rescue. He has comforted me for 15 years. (Photo credit: Michelle Buser.)

trip, I made a general pile of stuff I thought I needed.

I learned that the best way to pack is to ask yourself three questions (and these questions only work if you are honest): Have I used this is the last six months? Does this serve multiple purposes? Is it on my master packing list? Also, make sure you have room for one item that comforts you.

My mom. (Photo credit: Michelle Buser.)

Once I asked myself those three questions, I was able to successfully pack. However, when I got to the airport, my bag was still overweight. 

So I thought packing was the hardest part, but then I had to say goodbye to my family and best friends. Saying goodbye can turn the toughest person into a teddy bear.

As I was giving my hugs, I looked up to see my mom crying. This is so out of character for her, so of course the whole family started to tear up. After all of the hugs and tears, I took off into the line for airport security and realized that I really was on my own now. 

(Photo: Michelle Buser)
(Photo credit: Michelle Buser.)

So, if you plan to travel alone, just know you are not the only person who feels lonely, sad, happy, nervous and excited all at the same time. It is completely normal. I feel so lucky that I have family and friends that make saying goodbye so hard. That is a true blessing. I just made it to LA. Stay tuned with my blog for updates from Australia.

I will talk to you all when I land in Sydney.


Collegian Australia Abroad Blogger Michelle Buser can be reached online at or on Twitter @Buser_Michelle.