We’re all a part of the whole. We just fail to see it. We fail to see it all the time, to the point where we limit our social circles, name our families and a few close friends as the only people worth loving, and shut out everyone else. Where love is indeed this special thing that should not be taken lightly, it doesn’t mean that we should hold ourselves back when we have the urge to say “I love you” to someone, to show some affection, to share a caring word. No, on the contrary, we should treat love with the respect it deserves, share it with those around us in different (appropriate) ways. I say, spit it out! Let the people you love know you love them by saying it, showing it, or simply radiating it.
The people who drive me the most crazy on a daily basis here in Guyana are the first to experience the love that I don’t outright want to share with them. I try so hard to stay dialed into my humanity, to their humanity. I remind myself constantly that separating myself from other human beings on any level—social, spiritual, emotional—is a true loss, a tragedy, really. Imagine how much more could get done in the world, where we as a species could be if we didn’t shut each other out, if we didn’t wall up love, if we chose to coexist with one another in a way where, when we approached each other, we didn’t have to fear being verbally torn down or physically hit with a wooden board, but rather we had to debate whether the approaching loving encounter was going to be a hug or a kind word, a pat on the head or an invitation to join in.
There are no more rose-colored glasses to be found at the bottom of my American suitcase that I carefully packed up for myself almost three months ago. My life in Guyana is the only immediate road in front of me now. I don’t know where I’ll go next. While I’m here, I plan on continuing to be a kick-butt teacher. I plan on remaining invested in the educations and the futures of the boys that I work so closely with. I plan on continuing to plant (tiny, tiny, tiny) seeds of hope wherever I can in the lives of the fifty boys at the orphanage. I plan to continue to take in the sights, sounds, and stenches—I mean smells—of Guyana, absorbing everything I can of this culture, of this experience. I know, as I did before I arrived here, that the footprints I leave here are merely steps I’ve taken on a beach next to an approaching tide, whereas the experience I’ll take away from this will impact the remainder of my life tenfold.