07 February 2013

6 Months

It hit me today that 6 months from today, I'll be boarding a plane back to the states. It is so strange to think that I'm already halfway through my year in Belfast.

Looking back, I'm sure there are a lot of ways I've changed and adapted to being here. I've learned so much about myself. I've proven that I'm stronger than I think, that I can move to a foreign country, that I can navigate a new city. I've formed friendships both within the YAV program, and in the places I work.

(Most of) the Saturday night Youth Club team
I get to work with kids who are rowdy and hyper and "do my head in" (that's Belfast for "drive me crazy") on a regular basis, but who are also hilarious and smart and fill me with so much joy. Today, C. didn't see me in homework club and asked where I was (I was right behind her); M. asked how much longer until I had to go home (prompting my aforementioned realization). Her granny says she caught her practicing her American accent at home: "I'm Tricia, and I'm from America!"

Working on "maths" in Homework Club
I know I don't always focus on my day-to-day activities on this blog - mostly because it sounds boring when I list it out: helping with homework, teaching kids to make pretzels, reading stories to the Boys' Brigade or serving lunch to pensioners. But what I'm really doing is forming relationships. Letting these people into my heart... which will make that moment when I board a plane 6 months from now so much more difficult.

Story time in Boys' Brigade
All I can do now is make the most of the time I have left!

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