We had our first going away party this last weekend at my mom’s house in southern Oregon. It was a great chance to say bye to many of my friends and family members. One highlight was my brother being in town from Denver- it was great to see him and I’m excited for his likely visit to Zambia.
Another highlight was receiving a pie from Karen, a family friend who did a pie-a-day giveaway for a year. Now she doesn’t bake pies everyday, but she does when the mood strikes her. She wrote about us on her blog, A Pie a Day.
One of the sweetest moments of the trip came when I had to say bye to my little 8-year-old brother, Ezra. With tears in his eyes, he hugged me and told me that he knows I’ll “do great things for the world”. Even though two years seems like forever to him, he gets why we’re doing this and it really reminded me why we’ve put up with the long application process and the uncertainty. I know that we may not be “saving the world” with our service, but by committing the next two years to the Peace Corps, we are doing great things for the world by sharing our skills with others and learning from people so different than those we are accustomed to. To know that we have support from those we’re leaving at home makes it that much easier.
We have two more parties coming up this week: one with people from work at my boss’s house and the other at my aunt’s in Portland. I imagine this week will be pretty crazy but all these parties are making it easier for me to cope with the emotional stuff. Instead of anxiety, I’m feeling calm and excited for our departure. Let’s hope it stays that way for the next two weeks…