On the same vein of the post “I Brought Myself to South America,” I would like to talk about what it was like for us (mostly me) when we first arrived in Ecuador. I discussed it a bit in the beginning of this blog but I wasn’t even sure what I was actually going through at the time.
We had spent about 8 months of work and planning getting here. We sold most of our belongings via VarageSale, Craigslist, and OfferUp. We repainted the inside of the house, hired house painters for the outside, did a lot of landscaping etc., etc., etc. We sold our car, and even sold our house without a realtor. We had to get all the paperwork done, the tickets, the luggage, etc. There was a lot of work put into getting all of this done and on top of it, I had to get my tonsils removed 2 weeks before coming, and then 1 week before coming I found out I was pregnant. By the time we stepped off the plane, I was just spent. In my previous post I talked about pacing yourself, I drove full force to get here and was out of fuel when we arrived. I didn’t really know what I was doing after we got here.
I mentioned in that old post that I needed a routine, it wasn’t just that, I need more than a routine, I needed to work on moving myself and ultimately my family forward. I had let all of the planning contract on my sense of self and hadn’t focused on anything truly meaningful to me. This whole trip was obviously something that meant a lot, but I needed more than just the action of getting here, I needed to live it, to grow from it, to truly experience it. I think, like in my prior post, I truly brought myself with me and was expecting it to change me without me having to really do anything. I mentioned this concept being similar to getting married, you bring the same single person you were into that marriage, the marriage doesn’t fix the issues, ever….if anything after the honeymoon is over, all of those issues expand. I began realizing this shortly after our miscarriage, and have been working on myself and have been able to give more to my family because of it.
The responsibility of change and growth is solely our own. Make sure to nurture yourself, to take care of who you are, and what you need. Like the analogy I’ve heard from various folks, you need to put on your oxygen mask first, before putting on anyone else’s.