Dear Friends and Family,
I hope that you all had a wonderful Easter! I was able to spend my spring break getting to know my new niece Scout Jeannette Wooten! She is a beautiful little one with tons of dark hair. It was truly a blessing to be able to hold her and love on her during my week off.
I am now back in Honduras and ready to take on the last quarter of my time here. I have moments everyday where I find myself smiling from ear to ear, or laughing till I cry with the girls or my friends here, and I almost always end these moments with a little thought of how hard it will be to leave this country and this experience.
As always these experiences have their ups and downs. I went through some typical culture shock when I arrived, and actually again after six months. Following my experience in Argentina, as soon as I started to understand and be comfortable with Honduran culture it is near time for me to say goodbye. I do feel sad that my time is coming to a close but I also feel really good about what I have done here. I will do my best to enjoy every moment I have with my students, the girls in the home, and my dear Honduran friends.
I have a very special place in my heart for Honduras. It has a dirty history and a dark future. The people I know here though, are trying their best to make do. Given a pretty ugly hand, they pull through everyday just barely making it. I am grateful for the opportunities I have been given by solely being born as an American citizen. No matter where you land on the political spectrum you should feel grateful to be an American. This was a lesson I needed to learn, and have learned it well here in Honduras. If you find yourself doubting this I encourage you to think about a trip to a third world country and you will also see the light!
This past quarter of school, January to April, was very difficult. I think it was a mixture of many things. I had no break, no jaunt to the sea for a couple days, and it wore on me! Teaching is hard for me; I’ve overcome the everyday challenges, but nine weeks straight with no break and the only fun day at school was Valentine’s Day. I often compared it to the third lap in the mile race of four laps, its often the hardest lap, seems like everything in my life can relate back to running philosophy somehow.
I do have exciting news though! My plans for when I come home have really come together. In March I was accepted to The New School in New York City. I will be studying Non-Profit Management. I also got a job as a resident advisor so I will be living in the financial district of the city. I feel very blessed that this opportunity has become available to me. Thanks to the wonderful support I received from staff and faculty at Rockford I am now able to start making my dreams realities.
Being in New York City in the middle of all of the non-profit and international organizations will be a huge benefit to making connections in the non-profit world. I already feel a bit nervous about my ability to do graduate school. I’m telling myself everyone feels like this before graduate school; don’t tell me if it’s not true! ;-) I am going to push myself outside of my comfort zone there and really learn how to network.
Thank you for making this experience possible for me, and helping me to be a role model for these girls who are so wonderful. The following is a brief introduction of one of the girls from the home that I have had an extra special connection with and that I think will really make it someday.
Riccy is a ten year old smiley student in my second grade classroom. She is always one of the first girls from the home to welcome the visitors and is almost always in a happy mood. She loves to practice her English with the visitors and treats all the tias and teachers with respect. She is very affectionate and loves to dance!
Riccy tries very hard in school, though she struggles quite a bit. She is always asking me to help her study more over the weekends or after she finishes her homework. She seems to be very aware that she is lucky to be in the home and go to a bilingual school.
Riccy has two sisters who also live in the home with her. The three of them are always together. Please pray for Riccy as she finished second grade that she will continue to take her school work seriously and continue at Holy Family.