Day 59 of TBB and it’s somewhat hard to focus on the amazing experiences that I’m having after seeing what happened on Tuesday night. The whole group stayed up all night at our home-base and watched the election. What was supposed to be the most incredible night turned out to be a complete shit show. Donald Trump is our new president and words cannot describe how I am feeling. If I were to sum it though, it would look like this: devastated, hopeless, sad, disgusted, and scared. I’m scared for the hate we are going to see and I’m scared for the oppression of basically everyone except rich white men. I’m scared of all the progress we will lose from President Obama’s 8 years in office, and I’m scared to understand what it feels like to hate my president. I took President Obama for granted. This is the first election that I have been completely involved in and it’s fucking terrifying to think of what the future holds. On Wednesday morning I promised myself that in 2020 I will be as involved in the election as I can, and I hope everyone who feels the same way as me will make this promise too.
Ok, now that I’ve gotten my anger out, back to GHANA!!! There is only one more week until we travel to Thailand and I am soooooo excited. Ghana has been so incredible but I’m ready for a change. Living with my host family, working in a public health clinic, eating Ghanaian foods, getting to see the President of Ghana, trekking through a river to get to a small village and weigh babies, my host mom trying to force feed me the BIGGEST rat I’ve ever seen, watching zootopia 5 times because it’s the only movie we have, making life long friends, going to the craziest church I’ve ever been to, and traveling the world. If you told me I would be doing ANY of these things a year ago I would have laughed in your face. I can’t tell you how lucky I feel to get the chance to do these things. With only a week left in my first core country I though I would share some important lessons I’ve learned in the past 2 months. Enjoy!
- Live in the Moment: This is probably the most important lesson that Ghana has taught me. The first few weeks were really tough for me. I missed Jake and my family and friends so much and was only thinking about when I would get to see them in March. Yeah, this did not help me at all. I realized that I was missing out on amazing things happening right in front of me. It’s ok to plan and look forward to the future, but it’s not ok when that becomes your present.
- Don’t Let the Extraordinary Become Ordinary: When we skyped Robin Pendoley (founder of TBB) a few weeks ago, he said this statement and it really stuck with me. Mostly because that’s exactly what I was doing. I got in a pattern and started to forget that I was in fucking AFRICA!!!
- You Make Your Own Happiness: Ok so my parents used to tell me this alllll the time when I was going through my “bitchy phase” (10-16 lol) and I used to get so annoyed at them (sorry guys!) but now I completely get it. Me and Isabel were having a really bad day when we went to a small village in Adaklu, and we decided that when we woke up we would look at each other, smile, and say “Today is gonna be a great day!!” We probably looked really stupid but it totally worked. If would decide that you’re going to be happy, it’s a lot easier to make it a reality. This has been huge for me when I have bad days here.
There has been so much self-growth over the past two months and I’m so grateful to have made so many connections with the incredible Ghanaian people here. I’m so sad to leave my host family, but happy to start this new chapter in Thailand.
I also want to send love to Acton, it has not been the easiest couple of months there, and I hope especially after this election that we can combat the sadness and hate, with love and compassion. I’m giving everyone in A-town a HUGE huge ❤