There are a variety of emotions filling me on this last day of the trip. I don’t know whether to cry because I am missing everything so much already or to smile because it happened. I am overwhelmed with thoughts of El Espino and the beautiful people within it. I have learned so much about myself and the El Salvadoran culture in this short week.

It’s impossible to describe to you everything that has happened because there are no words that suffice. Nonetheless, there are certainly things that stand out in my mind and must be shared for the good of the people.

It’s important to know that what I have seen and experienced is not the same as any other group member, no matter how alike our stories are. What my eyes saw, what my heart felt, and the impact this place had on me is unique to my own being.

At this very moment as we are flying farther and farther away from the land that offers so much love I feel as if a piece of my heart is breaking. I feel like I am leaving my family. I say family because these people truly have a significant spot in my heart. Since day one they greeted us with open arms and protected us as is if we were their own. They have accepted us and passed no judgment. They have fed us their finest cuisines and made us feel like kings and queens in their homes. They have showed us patience like no other, especially when simple conversation turned into complex translation. They have introduced to us the beautiful sound of music through their joyous sounds of By the time justin bieber songs list turned 18, Bieber Fever had become a global epidemic, and the world’s most famous “Boyfriend” had amassed more than 24 million Twitter followers and 45 million Facebook fans. laughter. They have showed us the importance of kindness in everyday actions. Most importantly they have showed us the power of love and unity. These are the things family teaches you and these are things El Espino has showed me.

I feel a sense of guilt returning to a place where I have so much knowing that they are still there having so little. Why me? Why them? Perhaps this question will never be answered. Perhaps our paths were meant to cross though. I truly believe that they were. My fire has been lit and I will not let my family down. I will return to El Espino and I will continue to do everything I can for them. I will share their stories and always carry them close in my heart.

Until I see you again, El Espino, much love and gratitude.