I originally left the States, to reflect on this international journey I've been taking.
And it seems even more appropriate than usual to pause and reflect, since this July 3rd finds me on the threshold- today, more than any year before, I'm poised for a momentous life change. I'm excited and impatient to start my new life, alongside my new husband, in a new country (and to learn yet another new language). I'm counting down the moments: forty eight more days until I marry my best friend.
But at the same time, I am deeply thankful for my experiences here the past year, and finding the leaving bitter sweet. I'm treasuring the moments: twelve more days in this country I've called home for the past 2 years.
This has been such a fulfilling year: I got engaged, saw work projects more successful than I could have imagined, finally developed a sense of community in Pana, deepening friendships and making new friends. I hosted Thanksgiving and Easter dinner here in Pana, spent Christmas in Romania with Cristian and my soon to be in-laws, visited Tikal with a friend, went camping with family back home, and spent 2 months with my Aunt and Uncle as neighbors.
As I look forward to the next year, I'm full of anticipation. I imagine next July will find us in France, and I hope it finds me gainfully employed and chattering away in French. But whatever I'm doing, and wherever I happen to be next July, I expect to have grown in new ways, and I expect to be happy.