I want to start out by saying I don't think I realized how much I really loved the trip until I got home. The first week back was an easy transition to my regular sleep schedule and I was actually really happy to finally be back home after 3 weeks away. I was happy to see my loved ones and pass out all the things I got at green market square. It wasn't really until the first weekend back that I started realizing some things.
The hardest thing for me coming home has been trying to stay in touch with the better person that I had become in South Africa. It was easy to be more genuine and caring when you are away from all the stresses of life in Minnesota; but upon returning I feel as though I have sunk back into it. I am glad that it was something I noticed though. I printed out my New Year's resolutions and posted them next to my bed because I have heard having them in writing helps; and I think it has. I am am feeling the most at peace I ever have in Minneapolis. I also have notice a large difference in my anxiety since returning, which is probably one of the things I am happiest about. I love when I get to use the class material we learned in everyday life here at the U: thinking of others lived experience before getting angry, working on listening and patience, Ubuntu instead of individualism, and most importantly, forgiveness. I have been working on forgiving others and myself since coming home and it has been such a challenge. When we sat in class and talked about it, it seemed so easy to just not let people from your past bother you. When returning home and actually having to see and talk to those people made it a bigger challenge. I am still determined to do so though, I more than anything want the freedom I will receive once I am done forgiving. I think the last thing I want to share is from my list of New Year's resolutions that I posted in a previous blog of mine... I think that some of the learning we did with each other and conversations I have had since returning home has helped me to accomplish a goal already! I decided that I really want to do something to stand again laws that are unfair to minorities in America, and I will work to do that by joining activist groups and volunteering to do anything I can. My plans for the future are to move to Arizona and finish my education at ASU, and Arizona is currently having a lot of issues surrounding laws that are unjust to the Mexican american population; I think that is where I want to start out helping.