I have officially reached the halfway point of my travels in Costa Rica. Six weeks have passed in both quickness and stillness. This has me in more of a reflective mood than usual. With travel, growth comes to mind. I suppose this has been the goal of my travels in my current, young life: To return home expanded. With a stronger sense of self. I know I will not know the full impact of this until I return, but I feel myself expanding my self-love and self-assurance each day.
To me, growth during travel comes from throwing yourself outside of your comfort zone. By experiencing something new, and tearing yourself away from usual comforts, you turn to yourself for comfort. Thus creating that heightened sense of self. Costa Rica has surely done this for me.
And to be honest, it has been tough at times. I sometimes feel self conscious when people stare at me, an obvious foreigner. I feel uncomfortable, and often angry, with aggressive advances by men. I have been caught in the pouring rain more times than I would like. My legs have been eaten by mosquitos and biting ants. But these experiences are making me that much wiser. All of this, on top of handling it in my second language, has shown me that I can handle anything. Truly.
Luckily, the good outweighs the difficult. Reflecting on the past six weeks, I feel exceptionally healthy, joyful, grateful and loved. This experience has been such a gift. I quietly thank the universe each day for providing this opportunity. Just as the land of this beautiful country offers gifts in such abundance, this life continues to give. I am so unbelievably fortunate.
Of course, I owe much of my joy to my incredible travel partners. My sisters. Mallory and Beth. Fourteen years of friendship have led us to this point. We are experiencing nature together in all of its beauty. We are sharing in the reflective silence of rainy afternoons. We are crying and laughing together. Just a few days ago, Beth and I hugged Mallory goodbye on a busy street corner in San José. She is heading back to the U.S. to start an Americorps program as Beth and I continue our travels. As much as I miss her, I am truly excited for what her next chapter will bring.
Beth and I are currently in Cahuita, a little town on the Carribean coast. More to come on that. We are not sure what is next, but are enjoying the journey. Day by day.
Thank you, thank you, thank you for all of the love and support you have all shown me so far. To the followers I have gained in the last few weeks, welcome. I am overjoyed that you are joining me on this journey. I hope we can get to know each other.
Sending sunshine and love to you all.