And almost after 3 months I am still not ready to write this.
I have decided to write about my Nicaragua journey in a few different posts. I still have not processed everything mentally and I am still not ready to let go of the fact that it is over. SO…here goes my first attempt.
In February, I traveled to a small village in Nicaragua with 10 other amazing women. It was a (long) year in the making.
The whole year prior was spent raising $5,000 through buildOn, the organization we were traveling with to help build a school in a small village. Fundraising – an emotional roller coaster all on its own. I was so beyond thankful to have an extremely supportive yoga community, family and friends who not only willingly donated, they often donated twice and three times. It was a sigh of relief to see that everyone was on board.
It was an even bigger sigh of relief when I hit my goal.
The actual trip part was still two months away, which felt like an eternity. I’d say the hardest part of this whole process were those two months. I remember thinking, “ok, now what”? I felt a disconnect. I felt like I should still be asking people for money, creating fundraiser events and giving it my all. I felt like I should have been doing something, anything. But all I really had to do was learn more about Nicaragua, pack and practice my Spanish.
I wasn’t really nervous at all until the morning of our departure. I said goodbye to my mom and my boyfriend dropped me off at the airport. This was my first time ever flying out of the country. I felt silly trying to figure out how to swipe my passport through the airport check-in. It must have taken me a good 15 times to figure it out. This only added to my nervousness.
We landed in Nicaragua and walked outside to our colorful bus. The air smelled of burnt tires, a smell I don’t think I will ever forget. I smiled and breathed it all in. My first sip of Nicaraguan air.
On the bus ride I was quiet, I went into my “observe mode”, which happens a lot when I am nervous or in a new place. The landscape was beautiful and the towns we drove through were just as colorful as the bus we were driving on. Though two things could not be denied, the extreme poverty in the country and the happiness and joy of its citizens. People waived, smiled, giggled. It reminded me of the politeness and friendliness of Montana. It was nothing I ever expected.