The Costa Rica group has been home a week from yesterday. We arrived in Oregon on the 11th of December.
Leaving Costa Rica was difficult for us all because we had to say bye to our host families and our friends. We had to leave a home that we had become accustomed to these last four months. The one thing that helped me say good bye was knowing that I would return someday and that returning to Oregon meant reuniting with my parents, siblings and friends.
On the 10th, the group and I were spending last minute time with our host families and friends. I spent a lot of time packing and spent time with my host parents. Before I left I had given them a thank you card and a picture of me and my host parents. Before I left, I found the picture framed and sitting on their mantle for everyone to see. It felt good to leave and know they saw me as a part of their family.
The night before we left the majority of us did not sleep since we had to reunite in the center of the city at 4 am to go to the airport on the 11th. That night my friend and I went to our friends’ house and spent time with them singing, playing the guitar and reminiscing. At 2 am I went back to my house and showered and finished packing. Then at 4 am, my host parents woke up and took me to the center and we said our good-byes.
Saying good-bye was hard but quick and easy. This is where I realized how alike my host mom and I are. We both don’t show emotion unless we are happy and we don’t cry. We made our good-bye a “see you later” or “hasta luego” rather than a “good-bye” because we both are certain I will come back one day. They left instead of staying to see me off partly because it was too cold and partly because it would have been too difficult to prolong seeing me off.
A lot of peoples’ families stayed to say good-bye and watch out bus leave. There were lots of hugs and tears before we left and on our way to the airport. I think it was just one other girl and I that weren’t crying.