I’ve been in Italy for now 61 days. I knew I would be experiencing challenges but I didn’t consider how much I was going to discover about myself. I’ve always known my sensitivity overwhelmed me but I didn’t realize how much my daily life at home masked it. I came here with the idea of exploring a new world and a new culture full of art. Within 4 weeks, I found myself at a stump. My thoughts were a bit like this “why on earth am I sad right now?, I’m in Florence, Italy with 3 months ahead of me, surrounded by beauty and incredible art”. I was confused why I felt this way especially so early on; I started to paint. The nights I couldn’t sleep well, I’d go to the The Ponte Santa Trìnita, Italian for Holy Trinity Bridge, sit down on the protruding triangle and paint till the sun rose. The serenity of the early morning and the overwhelming beauty surrounding me, gave me an inexplicable feeling of contentment. It was then that I found myself, I found where my heart is, and what I love most in life. It is truly a memory i’ll never forget. My thoughts continued to spring from my sleep deprived head, “This is all I will ever need in this world, a canvas and some paint”, put me infront of something beautiful or inspiring, i’ll be even more happy. I’m afraid coming here is the only way I would have had this affirmation. Art has always been my passion but I never considered it my first priority in life. I also never had to rely on it to make me happy. At home, the distractions of my life, allowed me to be happy without art being the focus. Being abroad has allowed me to grow so much as a person and learn how to be happy without the aid of anyone. My surroundings involve conversations I can’t understand but emotions and beauty I can feel. The environment is nothing but inspiring and refreshing, Europeans appreciate life, and take nothing for granted. Now that painting has become my first priority here, I’ve reached a level of happiness I never thought feasible alone.