To understand where I'm coming from, we had class every day but the weekends. In the morning, I had a two hour grammar class. After that, I had a one hour conversation class and following that, I had a one hour history and culture class. Also, our weekend trips were also considered a class. Our professor traveled with us to every single one. I've never had teachers like the ones I have had here. Granted, it's easier to become closer when the class sizes are small and you see them every day. But I wish you could all experience what I experienced. Teachers that prayed for us and teachers that encouraged us when they could see we were at the ends of our ropes. I had a beautiful teacher (and friend) help me in numerous classes with personal problems. Not only did she help me during class, but she also took time to counsel me outside of class. I received advice from her that I will forever take with me. It wasn't just Spanish that I learned here, it was so much more than that. Living in another country without your friends and family can be a daunting experience, but I realized today that I had a family here with me the whole time. One of my other teachers could always tell when something was wrong with me. She would hug me and ask me how I was doing- ¿Qué pasó, mi corazón? "What's wrong, my love?"-and would give me relevant advice. And I'm telling you, constantly, they encouraged and encouraged and encouraged. When you're trying to master another language, encouragement from others is sometimes the only thing that keeps you going. I'll miss the genuine hugs and the conversations so dearly. It's something that I want to take back with me to the United States.
Switching the subject a little bit... While here, I have been journaling as much as possible. I personally love journaling and have always done it since I started high school. It's a beautiful way to vividly remember things. I also highly recommend journaling for two reasons: the first reason being that writing things out can help you realize things a lot better. The other reason is that you can write down all your prayers and go back and see how God answered them. It's a great way to share with others. So I actually started journaling about Costa Rica a little before I came. On February 17, I wrote, "I fear the emotional pain I'll experience when I have to leave. Isn't it funny how I can miss something that I haven't even experienced yet? I know this trip will change me and that is the most exciting part. I will really get to figure myself out." And that confirms how I feel today. The emotional pain is inevitable, but I'm glad I have something to miss. It means that it was worthwhile. Although, I don't think I have totally figured myself out yet, which is ok because I'm too young to have it all figured out. But I thank Costa Rica for making me realize this. I will hold my memories and feelings deep within a little, precious box in my heart. Lol, I'm trying to lighten the mood here. Through all of this, every single day, God has been with me and has carried me. If you're reading this and you think that God has left you or has forgotten about you, don't you dare doubt yourself for a second that He has ever left your side. I know that my Redeemer lives and that He is the reason for my joy. He can be the reason for your joy, too. I'm just sorry that it took me going to another country to realize this.
So I guess this is it:( My final blog post from Costa Rica. Thank you all who have followed along with me and have also encouraged me. I seriously feel like the luckiest girl in the world to have so many people that I love in my life. Now I have family in two different countries!