Lessons Learned

by Lisa

Be brave, make mistakes, say YES!

**Thoughts from October, 2017 – three months living abroad**

It’s Sunday afternoon here in Spain and I think to myself I’ve been here for almost three months already…! How is that even possible? Although it hasn’t been the most challenging thing I’ve endured over the past couple of years, it has definitely had obstacles. But I moved 5,000 miles away not only for the adventure of living in another country and experiencing other cultures, but to prove to myself that I could do it…I still have a lot to do, but I’ve accomplished a bit, such as…

  • opened a bank account, got a Spanish phone number, and rented a new apartment- all in Spanish
  • went to my first Spanish/English language exchange…I finally said yes after being asked a few times. I was so nervous to commit, but I need to do this. And it was great! (Side note…I am so thankful I said yes! My language partner, Fernando, became one of my closest friends in Aranjuez and he and his family became family. Lesson learned…always say yes, even if it scares you!)
  • made friends with my Spanish washing machine (mostly!!)  Ok, maybe not friends, but it does not hate me anymore…
  •  I learned to navigate the metro…I usually get on the correct train now!

It is amazing to look back on my thoughts and feelings after living in Spain for three months. Now, it’s been almost three years and the time has flown by. I have lived in two charming Spanish towns, taught at two different Spanish primary schools and will be starting at my third school this coming fall. I have endured a world-wide pandemic and experienced fairly extreme lockdown measures…and most importantly, I continue to learn new lessons,explore new adventures, and embrace challenges almost daily. For this, I am thankful and look forward to learning, growing, and continuing to become a better human (hopefully!).

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