Tuesday, December 29, 2009

The night before

The anticipation is all encompassing. There is no way my mind can be on anything else but Belize. Up until this time, I was able to pay attention to everyone else and meet the needs of everyone in my life. It gets to the less than 12 hours until I get on a plane to begin the journey back to Belize and there is no way I can talk about anything but going to Belize. I am so excited. I have said those four words so many times today. I told Courtney (our love for Belize has bonded us) that I would have no words if I did not have "I am so excited." What other words are there to describe this feeling?

I recently attended a conference and one of the speakers said that we should put ourselves in the place in which we we can reach our greatest potential. I think I am the best person I can be in Belize. I am able to give. My skills and talents are needed. I am validated as a worthwhile person. I have thought about why do I feel this so strong in Belize and why can't I accomplish this at home? I have some answers - I think - I would rather talk about them than write them in a blog - so find me and we can have a conversation.

That's another thing - there seems to be time for regular conversations in Belize - not just facebook, email, text and telephone - real face-to-face meaningful, caring conversations about whatever. I need this.

One of my students has never been on a plane or seen the ocean - anywhere. I have to be with her when she sees the ocean for the first time. I am more excited for her than I am for myself! There was a commercial on tv a moment ago that talked about - you are about to have a life changing experience - how cool is it that I can enable the students on this trip to have life changing experiences?! Well, that is my goal....we will see if it is accomplished - I really just set the wheels in motion - the people of San Pedro will do the rest!

Monday, December 28, 2009

I'm Back!

Thought I would start blogging again even though I am not back in Belize yet. I am so excited though because I will be there in two days! This is the hardest time (the waiting) but a time of great anticipation. Every time I go to Belize it is a totally different experience. This time I am taking 7 students with me. They are awesome people and great students so the possibilities of what they will accomplish is endless. Five students are social work majors, one political science and one public policy. They are taking a class in Education, Health and Child Welfare in Belize. This is a service learning class. I also will have four others helping - three social workers and a business person. We are still working in San Mateo and at Holy Cross to help families and try to improve the situations for the children in this community.

My mind is just filled with "what is it going to be like this time?" I wonder what fun memories we will have when it is time to come home. I can't wait to be where there is Kareoke any night of the week! I get to renew old friendships and just feel that sea breeze and sun! After a very wet dreary few months in Mississippi that is very needed for my mental health. I love to see a person's face - who has never been to San Pedro - and when you travel down Front street and get to the city park and they can see the ocean view for the first time - the face lights up and there is a look of awe like no other - a gasp usually accompanies - "it is so beautiful!" - I then know I have arrived and I get to share the experience with someone who is going to have the time of his/her life! I have such a sense of calm and "everything's gonna be alright."

I really feel like I have arrived when I see the landscape of Belize coming into the international airport. I love this country so much that it seems as I first see the land of Belize - I am able to breath again. It is like I wasn't sure that everything would align itself in the world for me to be there again and then I let myself believe it is really true - I am going to really be in Belize. It is like I held my breath until I saw it for real.

So I better finish packing up the bathing suits and sunscreen. Wish you were going with me! and if you are....I am so excited for you!!!!