A Spoonful of Honey

nephraterie Smith


January 18, 2020

All it takes to defeat oneself is an overdose of confidence and an empty belly. 

When I was a little girl, my sister and I followed the strict “Candy Friday Rule.” Every other Friday, we would have rows and flavours of enticing, diabetes giving candy. This being the idea of my father, who I can now understand, to give us a slight craving for something, indulge that craving only to give it to us again. Other than the sometimes mischievous ways of two little girls searching for candy in all the wrong places, in between our two week fast from candy, my dad would give us a spoonful of honey. 

“The rest will come later,” he would say as he put his trust in us to behave and wait until we got to the next checkpoint. Makinig it from Friday to Friday with only a drop of hope to fill a barrel that seemed to always have a yearning was hard, but it taught patience, discipline, and the ways of a rewards system. 

Now you might be asking yourself how this applies to my gap year , so I’ll tell you about. 

Now patience was something that was hard to come by in the beginning of my gap year. Taking into account the new foods, the new language, and the new people, I couldn’t help but have a craving for all things comfortable and familiar. Day by day it became easier to wait out for the next call from my family or the next english friend I came across. Sometimes I would even get a mid week treat of talking to a coworker who had lived in the US and could speak a handful of English to hold me over until the next call home. 

Now discipline sounds hard and is hard. I thought it would be easier after the Candy Friday Rule, but discipline will always be one of those things that has to be learned when in uncharted territory. This being said, I struggled heavily turning down the youtube videos in English, the google translate when I didn’t want to think, and the “No se” when I failed to conjure up the desire to respond to a language and a new world that challenged me mentally, physically, and emotionally. 

Now the rewards system I speak of is one of a sweet ,sweet sabor(flavor) and can be like those enticing, diabetes giving candies. As time moved on and I became more comfortable in my community and in the language, I thought I was HOT STUFF. Little did I know, it takes more than a few months to figure out a system of doing things and a language that has histories buried in it. Times when I would have conversations and the word “wawa” or “cushqui” would find their way into the mix, I would find myself dumbfounded by how much I thought I knew , but didn’t know at all. 

So I began to enact the Candy Friday Rule. Making every other Friday a checkpoint to measure my level of patience, discipline, and my rewards system. Now, as time has been moving on I have found myself less defeated by the aching of wanting to know everything, but battling time and not being accustomed to a way of doing things. The once overdosed confidence and empty belly that took me under has now become a spoonful of honey in between the spaces of learning and understanding. 


nephraterie Smith