9 more days left in Costa Rica, and then Globe Tracer will be stateside once again. My arrival here during Holy Week (Semana Santa) is ironic, a sort of foreshadowing of the transformation I was to expect. I landed here emotionally vulnerable and spiritually drained. I did not have an itinerary, nor a return date. Yes, it was to be considered somewhat of a vacation, but if I´m completely transparent it was also a life choice. I was under pressure, stressed, and depressed, and on the brink of an important decision. Was it going to be Fight or Flight? I knew I was done Fighting. So I got on a plane.
I came back to my homeland, with the freedom to seek out connections with family or pay rent and live with strangers. I did both. I traveled and lived in 3 distinct areas of the country, never being able to mask the fact that I´m gringa. Soy tica, pero vivo en los Estados Unidos. (I´m Costa Rican, but I live in the States) That fact alone makes me an outsider, no matter how many dichos (local colloquialisms) I learn. And that´s okay. I´m proud to be able to call a little jewel like Costa Rica home. I´m so glad to have gotten to know home better, to have been here long enough to fall in love all over again, get mad at my intake of rice and beans, get homesick and miss having 24 hour transportation, have a love for cooking reignited, learn not to be automatically squeamish when random bugs land on me, want to throw something at tv´s riddled with futbol games and novelas, and have the rainforest lull me to sleep.
Soon, I´m going back to the place that raised me. With a different face: a happy, chubbier, tanned face. I feel different but how will I really know if something inside has changed? For me the true sign of change is reaction. Has my reaction to past people, past situations, past memories changed? Or is it just as emotionally riled? I guess time will tell.
Although I´m going back to reality of sorts, I feel ready. Ready for new beginnings, a new attitude and a new appreciation. Please stay tuned.
If nothing else, I survived a Growing Pain.
How have you dealt/do you deal with Growing Pains?