There is always a new beginning, no matter what age you are or what your circumstances might be. If you are facing a challenge, start sowing your seeds of patience and you will reap the benefits of being brave soon enough.

By Shajiya Khanom

Life is a journey to be experienced and challenges are what makes that journey worthwhile. In fact, when you try to do something new, it is not easy at all. Every new step in life comes with new side effects. Everyone wants to face and overcome all types of challenges in life with confidence and self-potential.

 Dear Readers, you might be wondering, what do I mean by a new beginning in life? Because, there is only one life each of us  have. There is no backwards/erase button to begin again if we want a future according to our desires. But there is always a refresh button. When we want to press this button, that means you need a new beginning in your life. 


Do you think every challenge is an opportunity to have a new beginning in life? 

 I believe so. In fact, it’s kind of vice versa. Whenever I’ve had to start a new journey in my life, like a new job or attempting something new or travelling to a new place, I felt both excited and scared at the same time. But it always brings out the best in me . It makes me realise that people can start over and over again whenever life gets complicated & frustrated. 

In this write up , I am going to share three of my challenging & inspiring experiences, which occurred in three different stages of my life.


 My first time travelling solo in Europe 

After experiencing some amazing trips with my friends inside and outside my own country, the next thing I wanted to try was travelling by myself. By the grace of the Almighty, I got a chance to attend a workshop at IHS (Rotterdam, the Netherlands) in 2014.I was one of those people that didn’t really get out of their own bubble. I was leading a monotonous city life with a normal job and home and attending get togethers with just a few friends. Growing up in a city like Dhaka, there are a lot of other shades of life out there, which I wasn’t familiar with. So, this solo trip opened up for me a new beginning along with challenges that made me confident and mentally strong.

 What was my inspiration

 I have always wanted to study abroad since my childhood. My father was my inspiration. He completed his Master’s degree in Sweden and came back with a bag full of pictures travelling solo in Europe. Those pictures worked as a catalyst for increasing my enthusiasm towards higher study abroad.

After completing my graduation here in my country, I couldn’t manage any scholarship for further study. But I saw my friends who had done their higher studies abroad and talked about their experiences in Europe. Luckily and after putting in a lot of effort IHS granted my application with full scholarship for a one month workshop in Rotterdam.

 Best part of travelling solo

 It is all about you and what you want to do. It will give you a taste of freedom while simultaneously increase your confidence levels. Another thing is that, if you are by yourself, you’re more likely to have those cool, unforeseen experiences that you wouldn’t have otherwise.

 Toughest part of being alone in another country

 I tend to get homesick often. I missed my family and friends all the time undoubtedly. Rotterdam itself is such a quiet place especially after 6 pm, something I wasn’t used to being from Dhaka. I wasn’t totally lonely though – I shared my apartment with another participant named Nel from the Philippines who was one of the most cheerful people I have ever met.

As I mentioned earlier, I used to be okay skipping uncomfortable or challenging situations. So It was so difficult for me, even after I had completed all of the formalities in the airport. But I can’t deny the excitement I had in the 10-12 hour journey from Bangladesh to the Netherlands.

I was nervous and excited at the same time. After attending the workshop, I had to face all those study pains as a student but in a new way, in a new place surrounded by participants from different countries around the world. Such as;

  •  Attending classes and taking notes after such a long time. It was fun and challenging. 
  • Making new friends from different cultures was like exploring the world just like that.
  • On weekends, we travelled to different cities in the Netherlands with new friends. That was the most exciting part of this trip. Because we were so unfamiliar with the transportation system, understanding directions of the intercity terminal, using travel cards, etc. I felt like I have upgraded my skills while adopting their developed technical system . 

Dear readers, this trip worked as an eye opener for me and also helped me overcome some of my weaknesses .



My first relocation after marriage  

At the end of 2015 I had to move to Singapore with my husband as he was doing his PhD at NUS. So I had to quit my job and leave my homeland for two or three years to get settled and make a family of my own. Although, this story didn’t end as planned. We ended up having to move back again to our own country after a month.

Since we had no clue about the future, I was so happy starting a new chapter of my life in Jurong east, Singapore. It is a beautifully planned area and a residential town. We stayed in the house of a Bengali family as a subletter .  Starting my new family life in a new environment, in a new community and sharing utilities, common services with the landlord, was really a huge change for my lifestyle. It was not one of the toughest challenges in the world rather for me it was a learning process, a whole new world.

 I enjoyed travelling to all the places in Singapore. I found out how a modern culture can consist of a combination of Asian and European cultures, mainly Malay ,South Asian, East Asian and Eurasian. Whenever I got chances I walked throughout the neighborhood and got confused with the way back home. Because all the residential blocks were prototyped. But once you get used to reading the maps on the bus stops, you would find it much easier to travel the city all by yourself.

 My husband used to spent most of the time at his university. Sometimes I accompanied him, sometimes I spent time alone doing household work and the rest of the time we visited popular tourist spots including the universal studios. But the toughest part for me was to stay focused and adopt the uncertainty we were dealing with at that time. Of course adjusting with my life partner was also another challenge that I had to face. We didn’t know this Singapore journey would last for a month as my husband’s study could have stopped in the middle of it. It was truly challenging and encouraging. Despite having financial troubles and understanding issues between us, we kept trying to make our own family thousands of miles away from our native land.





Dear readers I must admit, the memory we created out there is still cherish-able. We were disappointed initially, when we got informed about the cancellation of my husband’s PhD course. Eventually it seems that whatever happened was the best for us. The next year he  got a better offer from the University of Western Sydney in Australia. The best part was, this journey truly brought a new beginning in my life. When we got back to our country and learned that I had already conceived, the struggle, anxiety and keeping ourselves calm, all seemed worthy. I can actually relive that day when the doctor confirmed my pregnancy. Believe me words can’t express but it’s very fulfilling and satisfying knowing that I was going to be a mother for the first time.


 Moving to another city with family 

This year, last month we had to shift to another city as my husband had accepted a job out there. We have a semi furnished accommodation given by his company and we have started our family life once again in a new city. Actually for the first time we three are staying together. Because my son and I used to live with my mom’s house in Dhaka, while my husband was pursuing his PhD in Australia. 

So this beginning was a fresh start for us as well as the toughest one because I had to leave the city where I have lived my whole life. Moreover there are some life changing facts I am dealing with as a mother, which I would like to share with you all, in another write up.

 New place comes with new Challenges 

  •  The fact is that my five year old son couldn’t accept the home shifting decision and his mood has changed since the first day we arrived here. He is trying everything in his power to not leave the house and we are trying to convince him every day in every possible way that it’s okay. We are hoping that he will accept the change eventually.
  • My challenge is managing everything all by myself and accepting that my career is now on pause. I’ve been keeping myself busy by involving myself in different activities, such as social work, writing, etc. as well as taking care of my son and freelancing work. So it has become difficult to coordinate everything the way I did back in my city.


Dear readers, after one months of a messed up daily routine, I have started tying things up and get more organized as I am getting used to the new normal. In fact the Almighty creator created us in such a way that we could adopt any situation eventually. Some might take time, some might not. But nature has that power to help us recover our inner strength to move on towards a new beginning. That’s what I am wishing for myself right now .



Every aspect of life has a beginning 

 Beginning means “the point in time or space at which something begins.” That’s what is stated in the dictionary. In reality, it depends on your attitude this article I have shared my experiences of “beginning again“ in three stages of my life – being single , being married and being with my own family. Travelling or relocation is not my main point here. 

Dear readers, Today I wanted to express my gratitude for my inner strength, because I have always believed in the concept of “ starting again,” which made me mentally strong. I usually don’t use the word “struggle”  for me, “challenge” is the word that we should say while facing any unwanted situations in life. If you think of it as a struggle, it will make you feel weak but if you think this is a challenging situation, you would take it courageously. Actually life requires some challenges to make your existence more valuable. Only then, might you discover your self-worth and change your perception towards the world.

2 Responses

  1. It’s a privileged to know you my dearest friend to know you from buet life | I know you will overcome each and every challenge cos your inner strength will make you to do so now and in future | love you

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