“ What are you feeling?”  /  “ Are you excited?”   / “ Are you freaked out?”

These are the three common questions I have been asked  over (and over)  the past six months while preparing for my travels to Ecuador.

Instead of writing my entire emotional history of the past six months of planning,  I am going to summarize it into defined phases:

1st Phase: The wow I’m not a Failure!

I can not explain the rush of accomplishment!   To think that all of the coffee I ingested and the late nights, that turned into mornings, was not a waste of energy. I was beyond the stars, as I imagined my future, secure in knowing anything was/is possible.  At this point of the year, college letters hadn't even begun to arrive for my peers and my choice just seemed, well….  crazy and "what are you doing?"

2nd Phase: The how do I explain this?

By the end of my senior year the questions started fluttering around. Everyone wanted to know where everyone had committed to go to college. Now unlike college, Global Citizen Year is a much harder concept to grasp for so many, a bridge year?  A lot of the response I received after explaining Global Citizen Year was, “ Ohhhh…. so it is like Peace Corps!?”, which is if I am to be totally honest, is what I imagined this was like too.  ( Oops…not sure this is quite the correct explanation)

3rd Phase: Prepare, Prepare, Prepare..

For anyone who knows me, we all know how important it is for me to prepare for any and every situation. This lead to every scenario I could think of.

“What if I catch every single disease my doctor warned me about?

“What if I do not have this exact outfit for something that probably won’t happen?”

“What if a zombie apocalypse occurs?”

"What if a volcano erupts?"  ( geez didn't even consider that one!)

To pack, to re-pack, to unpack, and do it all again was a constant over the past many months.  My loving mother even thought she would help by sneaking in clothing, in hope that I would not notice!  Sorry mom – noticed!

4th Phase: The Holy crap this is actually happening!

At the start of the summer I got this snazzy countdown APP for my cellphone. Now in my head, I must have just assumed that the APP would never descend past the one month notice. So you can imagine how surprised I was to see the seventeen day countdown on this snazzy phone APP of mine.

If we are being totally honest again, it is a little freaky knowing that your whole world is about to change dramatically  in seventeen days, ten days, five days, one day with only little warning ( A.K.A my snazzy phone APP). But may I also share how incredible it is to also know that this is actually happening and I am beyond thrilled to be able to meet new people that will become lifelong friends, experience another country's culture for more than a few weeks, and be able to discover new ambitions and passions that will hopefully define my values for the rest of my life.

To conclude this first Blog my answers to the following questions I stated above are,

“ Yes! I am nervous, but beyond excited for what my future holds!”

Until next time ( A.K.A. The next time I find a internet connection),