Processing these feelings.

Well I have been back from Mexico for a couple of days now and I still feel like I cannot process all the emtions and feelings which have taken over my body, heart, and mind. It was one of the most amazing experiences I have had. The people which we encontered were the nicest people, they treated us like we were family. The group we were traveling with were also so nice, we all got along really well which was great.

Before I left for the trip I was extremly nervous because I have never been to Mexico and I really was not sure what to expect. This was not a normal vacation, and I think that is what had my nerves going, because although I had an idea what we were doing, I really did not know. However the people make you feel so welcome and open up their hearts and lives to you. They make you feel like a part of their family, and they are so welcoming to you and happy that you are there to help and that you yourself are open and willing to open up yourself to them.

This experience for me was amazing becasue it is one thing to talk about these topics with people, or evern to see the peple doing the jobs, like we saw on the first day when we took our walk around the area and saw Oscar working on his Nopal field. I thought it was amazing how dedicated he was when I saw him working, but when we got the chance to work right next to him and do the work that he does I gained a whole other respect for him. It was also such a wonderful experience how much they appreciated us. Oscars mother brought us juice and cookies and was so kind to us. She even said that before Americans began coming here she had a very poor opinion of us. She thought we all had our foots on the Mexicans. However now that she sees us here her mind has really changed. It is great that her mind has changed, but so sad that she thought these thoughts at all.

What really surprised me was how in the United States people are constantly obsessed with their outer beauty. Constantly looking in the mirror, trying to by the best clothes, putting on lots of make up to cover up. During the week I was in Mexico I think I looked in the mirror only three times. And the mirror was the smallest mirror I have ever seen hung on a wall. It rarely crossed my mind how I looked on the outside because it just did not matter. What mattered was what we were doing. And no one ever commented on how we looked, or made us feel bad for not looking perfect. The people were so accepting of us, so loving, and so caring. They saw past our face and clothes and really saw the true beauty we all posses inside of us. What an amazing feeling.

It was really so great to work with these people as one. The day we worked in the Mixzteca was great. It was a whole different type of work experience. Everyone worked together, no one was complaining, no one was yelling, and everyone got along. Nothing like working here in America. It was also great because Celastino and I worked as a team, which definitly made it easier. It was more motivation than trying to accomplish these difficult tasks alone. It was also really nice to get to kow these people. It makes the experience more personal knowing these peoples past experiences, hopes, and desires.

My mind is still trying to process all these thoughts. Still trying to process what I experienced. Still trying to fully understand how it has changed my life, and what it means for my future. I am so grateful for this experience and so grateful for everyone who has made this one of the most amazing experiences of my life.