As the semester comes to a close and the flight is right around the corner, I am reminded of the great journey I have already taken. I know that the majority of growth and fulfillment of my own personal goals will come with the completion of the trip over the course. However, during the semester I have grown as well.
I began this process with the goal to open myself up to new experiences and venture outside of my comfort zone. I had also set out to build up a database of information pertaining to the history of South Africa in order to make the trip all the more fulfilling.
Reading over the goals I wrote a few months back, I am also struck by how I had prepared myself to gain so much from the people and the culture but wanted to give even more back to them. Although we haven’t traveled yet, I know I am already well on my way of doing just that. I have put countless hours into creating a service project that we, as group, would implement in order to provide the Varkplaas community with a sustainable vegetable garden.
Together with my mother I have also been able to collect over thirty pairs of donated, and barely worn, running shoes that we will give to the communities in South Africa. Thirty shoes may not seem like a lot but to those people it may mean the world. Each pair of shoes has a story and the story won’t end with a trashcan but with a new home and loving owner that will put the high quality shoes to good use.
I had expected to learn some history and go on a nice vacation where I could see the world and help a few people along the way.
Boy was I wrong!
In nine days I will embark on what I presume will be one of the most life changing adventures of my life. I may not know what will happen or what it will be but I do know that I am open to all possibilities of creating lasting memories.
The nice hotels and fancy food seem like minor details when really it is the culture I am more thankful for the chance to experience. I have heard through the grape vine that we will be visiting an orphanage for special needs children and I could not be more anxious and excited to arrive there. As a future Occupational Therapist I am blessed to have the opportunity to see such a setting and fully appreciate all the luxuries my future clients here will be afforded.