Shukura Babirye - Ecuador
June 7, 2018
Did the one thing I told myself I wouldn’t do, and that was to fall in love with my host community and people who have helped me so much over this journey. From my host mum and sisters, to the students from my colegio, all the way to missing the fact I will probably not eat guinea pig again and sadly makes my heart hurt.
I learnt that Ecuadorians could love me for me, and that I don’t need to change myself to assimilate into a culture because there are beautiful people in the world that will open their arms to me, and I am forever thankful for them for ending the last three months of my experience on a positive. These people above have touched my heart so much I never thought my heart would ever be whole again after this experience I have never felt so loved by people that I have only known for a few months. I will miss playing Volleyball with my students, making jokes with the professors, and hearing my host mum cry herself from laughter for something I did that I would never know. Siempre te recordaré <3
Finished my GCY journey saying goodbye to these lovely people who will always be a part of my heart. Got to see some old faces of people that I have known for over ten years to remind me of the growth made. Got the opportunity to finally make the GCY instagram by sharing my story publicly about my experience with integration and assimilation.
Back home with familiar faces and food. Noticing that my clothes are fitting a little bit more snug than usual. However, London welcomed with some sun which was a huge surprise. As soon as I stepped off from the airport I had a large sense of anxiety because now I am on my new adventure alone without a programme. I now need to rely on the skill learnt over my gap year. After these 8 months I know I can combat anything that heads my way.
I also spent this time doing my capstone which allowed me to reflect about my experience in Ecuador, not to dwell on the negatives, but praising on the growth that I have achieved over the eight months that I would of probably achieved in ten years.