ten years ago today i came back from south africa! this is me, 17, at victoria falls in zimbabwe, just a few weeks before that amazing and crazy day when the plane finally landed in portland. the main thing i remember about coming home is that my brother looked completely different. he grew like 10 feet while i was gone. and also i remember being happier than i even thought was possible for a human being to be. my mom said today that she found one of my old letters from when i was gone which basically listed all my family members and told them how much i loved them. including my kitty giro. i was really homesick for those 8 month and i’m glad i came back. it’s weird to have such a defining thing keep getting further and further away. it’s weird that i am 27. mainly, i can’t believe i went and survived the whole thing and that now i am an adult and i am away from my family all the time and i don’t call them sobbing every day even. every week maybe but not every day.

i’m pretty lucky. that’s all. happy earth day and happy being alive to me.