In March of 2007, I traveled to the Dominican Republic on a mission trip. I arrived there for the first time and realized how beautiful the country was. I was struck by its beauty and overall poverty. I worked with special education children at a local school. Initially, this was not what I had expected to do. I had signed up for the physical therapy site through the group that I was going with. It was truly a blessing that I was sent to work with these kids. It meant a lot to me to be able to spend a week helping those who really needed it. It was more rewarding for me than I can even explain. Not only did I teach these children, but they taught me.
When I went to this third world country, there were some things that worked and did not work. I traveled to a foreign country, where I had never been before. It was different to be somewhere where nobody understood you. In the beginning, I just expected to be understood in English. I would learn quickly enough that this was not the case. I had to learn how to adjust to my new environment. I expanded my Spanish vocabulary in the first few days mostly because I was forced to. Physically adjusting was also a new dilemma. I would have brought more bug spray for the plethora of noseeums that I had encountered.
I learned so much as I worked as part of this mission team. I learned how to pack a little lighter, but more importantly, how to live my life well. I was changed completely by this trip. I realized my passion for working with children. I know now that I want to study psychology in college to further this passion. This trip changed my life and taught me so much about myself.
Dear Reader: This page may contain affiliate links which may earn a commission if you click through and make a purchase. Our independent journalism is not influenced by any advertiser or commercial initiative unless it is clearly marked as sponsored content. As travel products change, please be sure to reconfirm all details and stay up to date with current events to ensure a safe and successful trip.