For seventeen years, I’ve lived in a bubble. Sheltered as the only daughter after three boys, I was conditioned to remain inside my boundary to ensure constant surveillance. Such a lifestyle granted me a degree of favoritism from Mom and Dad; yet I still pondered about the outside world, only doing so behind foggy windows, hoping one day to have a better view. However, reality became clearer as I learned of Rustic Pathways, a high school traveling organization with a soccer program in
After offering the trip as a substitution as an 18th birthday party, threatening to use all my savings, and endless begging, my parents finally let me on a plane to Costa Rica. Of course, my safety was still a concern. Thus, Mom purchased me a global phone as a going away present in exchange for a promise to call home every night. So with this new phone, a renewed passport, and a suitcase filled with Costa Rica-friendly attire, I was set. Little did I know, I was going to learn more than how to sand desks with sand paper and score a goal from midfield.
My first experience in
Furthermore, my team, hailing from across the country, brought with them their different colloquialisms, lifestyles, and philosophies. Up to this point, my strong Catholic upbringing influenced the way I chose friends, so I never enjoyed tolerating those with morals different than mine. Meaning, I judged on first impressions, a cause of many social inhibitions. But after realizing they were the ones I’d be stuck with for two weeks, I might’ve as well have tried. I’m glad I did, because as I gradually gotten to know them, the more accepting I became to their means. Through them, I realized everyone is given their own experiences that will eventually shape the way he sees the world, and the only responsibility I have is to acknowledge that adversity as a gift instead of something that separates us.
When most people talk about their travels, they usually go on about the location’s beauty. Though
My last lesson:
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