Dos Semanas Mas

Two more weeks here.

I’m ready to leave. This country is taking it’s toll on me. Especially after such an emotional event and being so far from home.

I’m ready for showers. Hot showers, water pressure, not having to dump water from a basin on my head.

I’m ready to not be covered in mosquito bites and smell like bug spray and African sweat.

I’m sick of walking out of the house with a headlamp on because either the electricity is off or I’m cooking in a kitchen without light.

I’m sick of living with two crazy Americans that don’t clean their dirty dishes to the point that maggots start growing out of the dish water and I have to wear flip flops around the house to avoid getting cat shit or termite droppings on my toes.

I’m sick of having to spend extra money to eat healthy and have it go bad because the electricity is out. Or to be motivated to go for a run and come home to a hot box and not be able to shower.

I’m ready for REAL food that is clean and safe to eat and not dirty or needed to be bleached.

I’m ready for my girlfriends and family and the comforts of home like my dog.

I’m ready to have a washing machine and clean clothes. And not having to hang dry my laundry and it be stiff and still not clean.

I’m ready to not have a layer of dust glued to my skin that even a scrub in the cold showers can’t remove.

I’m ready to not be dehydrated and drink refreshing water again.

I’m ready to be able to talk to people in English and not be stared at on the street just for being white.

This country takes its toll on people. I’ve been handling it well, and I’m confident that I can usually take any situation and find the positive in it. But after an emotional breakdown from finding out unwanted news from halfway across the world, nothing seems as appetizing as it once did here. I’m allowed to complain a little, especially now, right? I’ve pushed myself back out of my shell that I retreated into for a few days, but it isn’t all as glorious as it once was. Where I once preferred socializing and meeting friends out for tapas and drinks or drum circles, I now prefer walks along the sea, yoga in my room, or reading my books in a hammock alone.

I’ve been taking a break from blogging for awhile because I had been so immersed in the culture (and partly had SO much to say I didn’t even know where to begin)… and now after these series of events, I’ve been focusing on myself. I’ve taken journal entries on my phone and plan on uploading them at a later date when I am ready to share. There have been beautiful stories and crazy adventures, so don’t worry, they’ll be coming. I want to share everything about the amazing people I have met here and everything I have learned and grown from. This experience is life changing. I want to share it with the world, and inspire other people to travel or even just see things through my altered perspective after living here for a short while. It changes you. Well, it changed me, and I think it could change you.

Right now, I’m depleted. But this quote seems to make sense of it all:

“Do you not see how necessary a world of pains and troubles is to school an intelligence and make it a soul?”

Yes, I see.

Growth. Extreme growth is coming out of the situation in many aspects.

How appropriate that I find myself alone in a third world country, heartbroken and at the bottom of the bottom, with nothing to do but look inwards and grow, in this place, of all places. Being in this location has changed my perspective on my pain and my suffering and allowed me to find gratitude on a greater scale. And the circumstances of these recent situations has allowed me to find myself in a way I never would have before. Now as I experience these hardships and emotional battles, I’m attempting to disconnect a bit more, and instead share them with myself to fully resonate and embrace my experience. A bittersweet discovery is the moment you truly find that all you ever really have is yourself. In one moment or another, you will only have yourself. You come into this world alone, and you leave it alone… So why do we rely on anybody but ourselves? I’ve found that I should be my own biggest source of love and appreciation, first and foremost. And to discover that while here is the most appropriate of all. I’m becoming my own best friend and my own rock, while embracing solitude and silence… and I’ve turned to new daily practices igniting self-love and gratitude. I’ve had many changes in my life these past six months that I consider blessings, from my change in friends to my photography business and my intellectual endeavors, even my future plans, and I attribute them to a perspective of gratitude… but a strong self love is not something that I ever truly invested in. It’s not that I didn’t love myself, but I never before made it a priority and a practice to put myself first daily. The universe conspires in the strangest of ways, and I know in the strangest of ways this hurt and depletion is some kind of miracle working to grow me stronger and more grounded, rooted in myself and in love. When you love yourself, you see things in love and in changes your perspective, your gratitude to be greater and your understanding to be more vast. It’s groundwork for real strength and inspiration, love and growth. This is a vital lesson that I want to learn from and remember it’s teachings for the rest of my life. Finding myself here beat to the ground from the physical conditions, and now emotionally beat down from the circumstantial conditions, I’ve grown in ways that I may never, ever have before. So for these hardships, I am thankful.

These next two weeks are going to be hard, but vital… depleting, but strengthening. Love is everything, for fear is an illusion, and only love is real. A loving perspective is a choice… it’s a choice of gratitude and inner-strength. And so I’m focusing on honoring my body and soul, because it deserves the same love as anybody else. “This kind of love is not something we offer to some people and deny others– this is one love that embodies everything and everyone.” That means me, too.
Loving yourself is the greatest revolution.





About The Light Through My Lens

Light, both literally and figuratively, through my lens and my perspective.
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