Hello world, it's been awhile...


I told myself I would write, but even after a year's gone by, the emotional barrier blocking me from all of you still hasn't gotten any lower. Even now, laying here in my bed, I see myself sitting amongst my suitcases in Morocco typing out that last blogpost, and the wave of emotions is almost crippling.

So much has changed since I hugged my host sister goodbye and bawled my way to the airport. So much has changed since I began my journey to readjustment. I'm not going to lie and say that this past year was easy, and I'm not to sugar coat it and tell you readjustment was fast. Every day was a challenge and the roller coaster was never ending. Only now do I truly feel comfortable leaving my house in shorts, and only now can I read my journals without tearing up... at least not immediately.

Exchange is life, just like every other day, but it's the intense amount of change that makes it so transformative. The rapid addition and subtraction of characteristics is what engraves exchange so deeply into my identity. The scars of harassment and heartache are as permanent as the tagine induced stretch marks on my thighs.

These deep lacerations are what make adjustment so hard. When you return, your entire being is based on the obstacles you overcame, but suddenly no one can relate. Suddenly, the simple things that made up your life are irrelevant, obsolete even. Readjustment is the battle between holding onto who you are, and letting yourself shift and adapt to who the world around you expects you to be.
Who I am today is the outcome of that battle. I am the product of fluidity and flexibility.

On Friday I begin another phase of intense change as I set off to begin my first year at Ohio State.
There I will be studying Plant Pathology and hope to eventually get back overseas and lower the 40% of crops lost every year to disease. I am so excited for the fresh start and all the challenges that face me. I cannot wait to see how these next four years will change me.

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