Coming into this experience, I was told that my emotions would resemble a roller coaster. Supposedly, I would start very high, with so much excitement around me, but would soon hit a low as the reality of a new culture and being away from home hit me.
Thankfully for me, in the past five weeks, I have experienced very few low’s. With only one real “breakdown,” Spain has really been nothing but amazing for me.
I can honestly say that I owe this to the amazing people around me. From my incredible host family, to the crazy wonderful friends I have made, I could not be more thankful.
My host family welcomed me in as one of their own, and truly take care of me like parents. Not only do they make the best food, but we sit and enjoy it together. While this may sound like nothing, it has been so important. I honestly feel that they genuinely care for me when they ask how each day has gone, what I have planned for the evening and weekend, and always how I’m feeling. While it’s clear that they care about my roommate, Clara, and I, they have taken our friends in as their own as well. Earlier this week was my host father’s birthday, and all that he wanted for the day was to prepare a big dinner and enjoy it with us and all of our friends. All together, we enjoyed a 3 course meal, and drank and danced in our living room until 3 in the morning. Even though my program is not yet finished, I know that my relationships with Paco and Lola are ones that I will carry with me forever.
In addition to my wonderful host family, I have also made 4 of the best friends I could ask for. Though it has only been 5 weeks, I feel like I’ve known these people for years. In 5 weeks, there has only been maybe one day that we have not seen each other. While they definitely keep me on my toes, and I don’t get much sleep due to our constant outings, I wouldn’t change it for anything. Them keeping me so busy has been key to limiting my homesickness, because I really just don’t have time to be sad. With trips most weekends, and full days spent at each other’s houses when not traveling, they have made all the difference in this experience for me.
Being on the other side of halfway through my program is completely breaking my heart, partially because I have no idea what I’m going to do when I don’t get to see these people daily. However, I have no choice but to make the most of my time left, and plan for the time I get to see them again.
Until next time,