So here's my recap of things I've learned and what has happened:
- Still thankful for my roomie Melissa, we definitely go through some pretty frustrating days here and it makes it all the better to have someone you can vent it out with (or do the occasional Christian Bale ‘Good for you' impression with:-)...that moment is just so relevant in so many situations).
- I am definitely (and finally) feeling a sense of adjustment and community at home and in my school placements. I am really enjoying my time in both the Secondary School and the University because I work with some pretty amazing teachers and have some pretty awesome students. Being able to sit back and watch a student give a presentation and allow myself to take in the surroundings is a really intense moment when you have that realization of where you are and what you are doing. I have come to realize how big this is for me and have learned to be proud of myself for being where I am and for having been able to accomplish this. GO ME! (and US to my fellow ETA's).
- The Arriva bus system is still the most annoying thing in existence, however, you know you have moved on when you can laugh at the insanity of the bus drivers (wonder if that makes me a little insane too...hmmm?). Either way, they are so insane they deserve their own reality show (personally I think insanity is a requirement for reality t.v.). Cursing customers out, driving off on people, playing cat and mouse with pedestrians...yep that would make for some entertaining t.v. time!
- Still struggling in the coffee department. I face timed with a friend yesterday and she asked “what is the one food you miss, is there anything you are missing right now"? Coffee immediately came out my mouth. A nice large Dunkin Donuts cup would be a dream come true right now. Funny thing is that I was not a major coffee drinker back home but because it is such a comfort drink for me, I am having a very hard time with not having good coffee here...boo!
- I still miss my dogs terribly, so hard without them! I miss them so much that I really do foresee me volunteering my time at the SPCA in Floriana to be able to get my doggie fix.
- Men and fashion still don't go hand in hand here, for the most part unfortunately, but it is what it is ...again you just learn to let go and move on:-).
- Still never tire of being able to walk the promenade on a random night for that pivotal Coca-Cola run to McDonald's or for bubble tea or gelato. It just never gets old and is really the most relaxing perk of where I live. So grateful for that.
- The Maltese are very loud and passionate speakers (and for all I know they could just be saying 'hi' to someone) and this makes me happy because I think of home and makes Malta feel a little like home because us Puerto Rican folk are about as loud and passionate as it gets...but you know, it's not yelling:-).
- Now for the big moment: I have officially been able to prove to myself that I can live away from my family and friends (and dogs) and the world didn't end because of it (dramatic I know, but I needed to drive the point home). I wasn't sure if I would ever get over that hump of feeling homesick. I still miss home terribly, don't get me wrong, but life seems surreal here most of the time and believe me when I tell you I am not living a particularly glamorous life. School and home with an occasional visit to a restaurant, festival or day out shopping is the norm, but it is surreal and I know I will never have it this good again so while I am here I must make the most of it! Nothing can be taken for granted because this will all be over in 7 months (whether good, bad or indifferent) so just trying to take in every moment of everyday. Carpe Diem, Y.O.L.O. and whatever other fitting mantra that suits my point you can fill in here______!
- Now having said that, the other key point proven? A 6 hour time difference is too long and Malta is too far but it'll do for now:-).
As Thanksgiving approaches, my reflection on the last month has been one of learning acceptance and acknowledging the blessings I do have in my life. I know some things for sure, I will continue to grow, personally and professionally (BLESSING as we should never stop growing), there will be good days and bad days or as one prior ETA put it “the highs will be really high and the lows will be really low" (BLESSING because that is life, you take the good with the bad and it's what you do with it that matters). I have a loving and supportive family, amazing friends and have had and will continue to have once in a lifetime experiences whether good, bad or indifferent (BLESSING because it shows me I am living life, simply living life)! So I end this post with a part of a song I think is very fitting to my 2 month mark and how I am feeling about things right now in general. The song is called On Top of the World by Imagine Dragons:
“I coulda gave up then but
Then again I couldn’t have ’cause
I’ve traveled all this way for something
Now take it in but don’t look down
‘Cause I’m on top of the world, ‘ay
I’m on top of the world, ‘ay
Waiting on this for a while now
Paying my dues to the dirt
I’ve been waiting to smile, ‘ay
Been holding it in for a while, ‘ay
Take it with me if I can
Been dreaming of this since a child
I’m on top of the world".
I'm on top of the world friends because LIFE.IS.GOOD! Happy Thanksgiving Everyone!
Until next time!