22 June 2009

Esta aqui ahora mismo.

Palabra del dia: paciencia --> patience

I went on a bike ride the other day (despite the near 100 degree weather and humidity that makes you feel like you're in a sauna) because I needed to get out. I needed to feel the wind on my face in a way that running couldn't give me. I needed to get out in nature, where I always feel most alive. I needed time to just me. And it was goooood.

I talked to God. I asked him what in the heck I was supposed to be doing with my life. Or more specifically, what I was supposed to be doing this summer, stuck in Springfield when I just want to be back in Spain. This is what I feel like he told me: even though I don't like this place right now, that doesn't give me an excuse to like the people. Sure, there's many many many things I don't like about America. But others, it's not so bad. Springfield is my home, this is true. It helped shape me into who I am. I am grateful for that. I am ready to move on, yes, but I am here now, and there's nothing I can do about it (especially cause I have no money to go anywhere else!). So that's what I'm going to do. I'm going to love people. I'm going to volunteer, hopefully speaking Spanish. I miss speaking it so badly. I try to speak it at home, but you can imagine the look on my mom's face when she doesn't understand a word I'm saying. I'm also going to love people at work. Even though they can drive me nuts, I'm going to love them. I'm going to serve them. I'm going to soak up the time I have with my mom and step-dad at home, and little brother who I see mostly at work, because I know in a few short weeks, I'll be back at school.

Another question running through my head has been what the heck am I doing with my life?! What am I supposed to do after I graduate? I only have one more year of school left, and it's just now hitting me. Okay, I love Spanish, Jesus, and people. There's gotta be a job for that. Mission work? I don't know. Non-profit organization? Possibly. I know I have a strong desire to go overseas, and I feel like that will happen.

It's funny to think that me, who didn't want to leave Springfield when she left for college, is now ready to move on from this place and see the world. Or part of it. Or all of it, that'd be swell. It's incredible to me to see the change in myself, when I once remember thinking "Change? Right, like I'm going to change!" Hm. All in all, I feel like I'm in a good place right now. I have a new perspective on life, and even though I have ants in my pants about going back to Spain, I somehow can understand why I'm here now. It's good.

Lastly, I'm going to Texas this weekend for my dad's wedding. I'm so stinkin excited! Except for the 100+ degree weather, humidity, and fire ants part. I get to see my brothers and sisters-in-law and niece and nephews (one of which was born in March and I haven't met yet!!). It'll be a great family time. Also, my soon-to-be step-mom, Gracie, is Mexican. That means her family is Mexican too. And they're going to be at the wedding. Which means... (drumroll please...!!!!!) I GET TO SPEAK SPANISH TO PEOPLE WHO UNDERSTAND IT THIS WEEKEND!!!!!!!!!!!! YESSSSSSSSSSS!!!!!!!!! It's like a friggin' dream come true, I tell ya. I don't think I could be more excited. I might even just act like I don't understand English so they don't have a choice but to speak Spanish to me. Muahahahahaha!

Okay now I'm just gettin ridiculous! Until next time................

12 June 2009

No tengo un idea.

Palabra del dia: soledad --> loneliness

So. I've been back in good 'ole Springfield, Missouri for about 2 weeks now. It's a strange feeling. I have days where I think I'm doing alright, and others where I hate this place. Mostly, I have been feeling pretty lonely. It's strange because usually there are quite a few people around me on a regular basis. It's not that I necessarily have a lack of people to hang out with (though, I say this as I'm sitting at Starbucks, alone, on a Friday night...don't judge). **Random thought, I have a book in my possession called "The Path of Loneliness" that a friend lent to me before I left for Spain. I think I've read about 8 pages of it. Maybe now is a good time to dust it off?** Anyway, loneliness. It's a strange thing. I've spent my recent days house sitting, hanging out with my favorite cousin Laura. She is one of my favorite people. Her and I have always gotten along and understood eachother in a special way, almost like sisters. Though we don't live close, we tend to be somewhat close. We have been house sitting for our grandma together, and it's been a great time to hang out and talk and really just get to know one another better. When I'm not hanging out with her, I've been at my new job waitressing, or at least trying to waitress. It's a bit overwhelming right now, but I'll get the hang of it, I'm sure.

The loneliness part comes in here: No one here understands me. Not a soul. All my Granada friends (who are American) live everywhere but the Midwest (with the exception of Steph who, if I had the money, time, and a car that didn't leak antifreeze like it's a job, I would visit in Chicago). Like I said before, I am a different person. I believe different things. Or I should say, I think I do. Because I don't even know what I believe about certain things. It's a strange feeling when you come back to your home and don't agree with it. Like your favorite childhood food, sometimes when you try it later, it just doesn't agree with you. And maybe there's nothing I can do to fix this. But in the meantime, I intend to try to figure it out, by whatever means I have to take to do so.

Here's some recent random things that have happened to me as a result of this:
1) I overheard a woman the other day saying something about going to Mexico. She said (and I quote), "You know, if you go to Mexico, you almost have to speak Mexican." Um, EXCUSE ME?!! Mexican?! Lady, that is an ethnicity, a type of food, NOT A LANGUAGE. It's called Spanish. Seriously. How ignorant can people be?! I don't get it. I wanted to chew her out. Too bad it wasn't my place, (and I may have gotten fired from my job on my first day) because I totally would have done it.

2) I had a weird dream the other night. I was with a group of people my age-ish. We were somewhere, I don't know, a camp or something, sitting outside in the grass. Everyone else was already there, and I came up to the group to join them. As I approached them, I saw iPhones, iPods, everything material, and heard the dreaded "So like..." way of talking. You know what I mean. And, in my dream, to these people I said, "Whoa, I have to leave. I can't be around you all right now cause I'm just going to judge you. Bye." I think this probably explains some of my attitude right now, as much as I try to fight it.

These two examples are just part of my life right now. I know it's because I've been exposed to a different life, different religions, different everything, that certain aspects of the American way of life are just not... suitable?.... for me anymore. It's not what I want, or what I understand, or what I agree with I guess. Maybe it'll get better, but I don't see that happening anytime soon.

Please understand me: I don't hate America. Or Americans. I'm just going through culture shock right now, against my own culture, and it's weird.

Back to being lonely. I don't know what to do. There are so many people that I know understand me in my life, friends and such. But here's the problem. NONE OF THEM LIVE IN MISSOURI. Not cool. I need a transporter (or just a new car, unlimited money and time) to go visit them all. Seriously.

Last thing, when people ask me if I'm going to go back to Spain, my response is "Why yes, I am. After I graduate. For a year to teach." I tell people this to A) show them how much I love Spain and B) convince myself and get it into my head that it is actually going to happen, because if I don't convince myself, it won't happen. However, while I was running the other day, I decided why not? I don't have anything holding me back. I won't get this opportunity again. While others are busy getting jobs here, going to school, getting married, whatever they may be doing, I will be going to Spain. Because nothing is holding me back. And I like it like that.

Please do me a favor. Yes, you. If you see me, please give me a hug. I could really use it. And if I cry and sniffle on your new shirt, just grin and bear it.