I have a really remarkable group of friends and family. They are putting up with me leaving them for Ghana for two years quite well. I only have 612 more days to fix Ghana and bring prosperity and peace to this country. In 613 days my friends and family will be graced with my awe inspiring (and fabulously dressed) presence. That is if I don’t decide to stay here forever, leaving all my friends and family to worry about my sanity and whether or not I actually am an alien.
First let me say this – food is the gateway to bliss. Everything. I mean everything is better when you have good food. I like it here, a lot. But on days when I am feeling low, a good packet of M&Ms does wonders for the soul. Some gummi worms are a sure fire way to make me feel instantly better. Food brings happiness. So with that –
I have been so amazed at the outpouring of support I have received. An online friend of mine sent me a care package. I have never met him in my entire life. I didn’t know where he lived. I didn’t even know his real name, but still, he sent me a wonderful care package. When my old coworkers sent me a box of goodies and included cards, I cried for days. I was so overwhelmed by the messages they included. When my friend Daniel facebook messages me about a story or something that happened the other day, I get so excited. I feel like I am sitting next to him at his house swapping work stories or gossip. My dad’s coworkers included some magazines in a package my dad sent. They didn’t have to do that, but they did. I got them when I was with 23 of my friends. We sat around in my room, a big group of 5 or 6 of us and all just read magazines. We would share pictures we enjoyed or read blurbs from an article. Those magazines have been well loved already. When my mom sends me care packages that have exactly what I wanted and needed plus a card, I just want to hug her. My mom understands me so well and when I get a package from her I know that it will be perfect. I know that she painstakingly took my wish list and wrote it down on a lined piece of paper, probably with blue or black ink, it would be in all cursive, and she would take it with her to Target or Walmart. Items would get checked off the list and she would review it to make sure she didn’t forget anything. And when I open that package and see everything I have been yearning for, I smile for miles. I hug the package and pretend that I am hugging my mom. My dad’s packages are always a riot. There is always something completely random shoved into a box in some odd corner. I often pull it out of the package, look at it, laugh, and then continue digging through. Julie’s packages are wonderful too, I know to expect nail polish remover now.
With every care package, I feel like I am opening a box of love. Every time I slice open the box, I feel a wave of emotion flooding out of the box. It is incredible how uplifting a simple box or envelope is. I really love when I get random emails or facebook messages as well. You have no idea how amazing it is to hear what is going on back home. You might think it is mundane, but I think it is fascinating. I want to know everything, what did you eat for lunch, work gossip, how your dog is, where you went to eat. I love hearing those little details, because it makes me feel like I am not 10,000 miles away. It makes me feel like I am sitting next to you chatting.
Never did I guess I would stay so connected in the Peace Corps, but it sure is amazing how much it helps. Family, friends, thank you so much for supporting me. Thank you for your kind words. Thank you for your simple messages. Thank you for the care packages. Thank you for being my friend. Thank you for putting up with me leaving you. Thank you for understanding why I am doing this. Thank you for listening to my crazy stories about Ghana. Thank you for telling me your stories. Thank you for keeping in touch. Thank you for going out of your way to be amazing.
I will find a way to repay everyone for their outpouring of love. I promise.