Thank you

Makaleh Smith - Ecuador


November 22, 2015

Although I have always loved Thanksgiving, it holds a special place in my heart this year. 

I began this journey hopelessly homesick; crying everyday, wishing for just a taste of home. It was draining and made it impossible to be anything more than a sad, crying burden for my host family. 

I knew something needed to change.
I looked to gratitude. When I woke up in the morning, I often felt like I had a dark pessimistic cloud following close behind. I would slump over to my desk and force myself to write down all the things I had to be grateful for that morning. This process was repeated in the evening, and usually resulted in even more gratitudes than before. 
This process was my salvation.
Everyday, twice a day, I was forced to focus on the good. I had to look at every possible thing I had to be thankful for, and actually thank them, even if it was only to myself in my journal. It lifted my mind and my spirit, and reminded me of what is important.
So this process, everyday, for about a month, leads to a very happy girl, beaming from all she has to be thankful for today (today stands for the 22nd of November all the way until actual Thanksgiving day). 
Where do I begin within my laundry list of gratitudes?
Well first of all, I am beyond grateful for the journey I am on, and the Spanish speaking, mosquito bitten person I am becoming. The experiences I am having and people I have met are invaluable additions to not only my year, but my life. 
I thank my host family for being patient and understanding. And for never holding back with making me feel a part of the family. 
And most important of all, I am beyond grateful for the incredible family and friends I have back home, supporting me along the way. 
One last gratitude to state, but definitely not the last in my heart. Thank you for being curious, or kind enough, to read my blog. I hope it resonates, inspires, or at least entertains. Happy Holidays.

Makaleh Smith