It’s a little hard to believe. I have done so much in these past two months, traveled to new places all over Costa Rica, learned how to surf, visited Cuba, spoken more Spanish than I thought I would and developed new friendships that I will keep forever.
It’s fascinating how one day you feel like you are starting life over and then the next you feel welcomed, loved and part of a bigger family. I am very grateful for my friends here who accepted me for my weirdness aka loud burps, weird dance moves, and my spontaneity.
During the past week I kept saying, “These two months have flown by” while that is true it hasn’t been a smooth sailing two months. Not only have I gotten sunburn several times, ripped off by taxi drivers, or left waiting for a bus for hours, but I have felt alone.
For me it wasn’t easy to leave my life behind. I was afraid, I wasn’t prepared to have major FOMO (fear of missing out), and I was’t ready to leave my friends and family. I knew going into this trip that it wasn’t going to be easy. I was going to have to build a new community and leave others behind (besides the wonderful FaceTime dates and mini life updates).
Through my time here, I am learning to overcome these fears and doubts. I know that I am so incredibly loved by those who are home and when I return I will be welcomed with loving arms.
Well this all sounds depressing doesn’t it? You think to yourself “Maddie, You get to travel to new places every week, meet so many new people and experience life in Costa Rica!” And you’re completely right. I am living “the life” here. All in all I got the opportunity to grow in a new community and I couldn’t be more thankful.
During these past two months, I’ve shared a lot of laughs and cries with a good group of people. We’ve slept in countless different hostels, watched a variety of depressing moves (thanks to me, I love drama), and shared a lot of plantain chips. Through that, I have learned to love another community of people. These people that we share a love for Costa Rica and that will never change.
This past weekend I spent my time in Montezuma, a little beach town far from home (San Ramon). We woke up early to watch the sunrise and I decided to walk on the volcanic rocks to get a closer view of the ocean and sun. I didn’t have shoes on, not a good choice. These rocks were very painful to walk on, every step I took with ease hoping to not cut my feet open. I eventually reached the sand and felt a release of pain and discomfort. Thats exactly how I felt coming here to study abroad. I knew it wasn’t going to be smooth sailing and it was going to be a little rocky and sharp at first, but I have found my sand through the wonderful people I am surrounded by, the beauty I see everyday, and the memories I will forever hold on to.
I hope that you got this far! Thanks for reading!