Day 1- departure day, august 12, 2010.
This is so surreal.
I was sitting there at MSP gate E16 after having said goodbye to my family,friends, and family friends. The picture I’m sure you all have is of me bawling my eyes out and running though a montage of amazing memories of people I’m leaving behind…. Iwouldn’t have expected anything more from me. But the most shocking part is that despite all the thousands of emotions I felt right then, I was not emotional. Like I said, shocking: I was not crying after having said this last, and most monumental, goodbye. Instead, I am filled with a sense of hope and potential. Never before have I had such a clean slate- and never before have I had so much uncertainty about what lies ahead either... I am not even sure if I have been pronouncing my host family’s last name correctly. But the thing is, that is so incredibly exciting! Its not that I’m not sad to leave- I am, and anyone that has hugged me goodbye in the past week can give a testimony to that fact, but it is the same simple reason that those goodbyes were so hard that this departure is almost easy: you are all amazing. I have the best friends I could ever even dream of, an incredible family, and the support of many back home. Argentina is not going to change that. In fact, I know that those days when this exchange is so hard I can turn to any of them for advice, imaginary hugs, or just a good laugh. And then I can get up, shake it off, and go discover something about myself, my background, and/or the amazing culture of Argentina.
So thank you to everyone for letting me sit here dry-eyed and happy. Without you, I don’t know how I’d do this. In fact… I don’t know if I would, and that isn’t a thought I want to have.