“Goodbye…? Oh no, please. Can’t we go back to page one and do it all over again?” – Winne the Pooh. Saying goodbye to Romania was a bitter sweet occasion. Ready to head home and see much missed friends and family; yet, when you are engulfed in hugs, eyes filling with tears, little voices begging you to stay and asking, “when will you come back?”
My heart broke as the big van pulled away from sleep away camp. How many people have come and gone just like me? If I were them, I wouldn’t love so easily, but how beautifully those children loved us, more than we ever deserved. In all our grand plans to change their lives; in reality, they changed my life more than anything else.
I would love to rewind and do it all again. Not to change it, but simply to live it all again. However, Lewis Carroll said in Alice in Wonderland, “I can’t go back to yesterday because I was a different person then.” As I settle back into my college life in Radford, I am keenly aware that I am not the same girl who boarded an airplane over seven weeks ago. For this, I am beyond grateful.
Working with Project Ruth forced me outside of my comfort zone and showed me that if it is God’s will, then I can do it. I was not placed in my comfort zone until our very last week as we took the kids into the mountains for sleep away camp, and I was given the opportunity to teach serval dance classes. I had been out of my comfort zone for so long, that it was odd to step back in.
Dancing with those children is a memory I will hold in my heart forever. They had a way of enjoying it that I have sometimes forgotten, and many of them had incredible skills. This moment spoke so loudly to me, not because I am simply a dancer, but because I have been pursuing a career in Dance Therapy for two years. Before this summer, I had started to doubt if this was the right place for me or where God wanted me.
Though I still don’t know exactly where God is calling me, these children showed me that I have a heart for dance therapy, and no matter what God has in His plans for me, I am headed in the correct direction.
I am so delighted to take all that I have learned in Romania back to my life in America.
- Eliza Green