Being back home has been a conflicting experience. On one hand I was feeling slightly homesick throughout my trip, while on the other I began dreading the idea of leaving such a surreal experience. Studying abroad in Belize fulfilled every desire I had imagined for this lifetime opportunity. I would not trade those seventeen days for anything else. Before departing the airport, I felt anxious, uncertain, and hesitant. I feel fulfilled, satiated, and complete after being back home and finished with Belize (for now), however I do miss waking up and being able to walk to a beach just to go snorkeling for hours on end. Saying goodbyes at the airport was one of the hardest parts of my trip. I spent every waking moment with these people for half a month. It might not seem like enough time to grow close to someone, but when you are on a confined island doing research, as well as eating breakfast, lunch, and dinner with them, its plenty of time. Those friendships are one of my most cherished takeaways from the trip. I am not completely devastated by saying my goodbyes since I am certain I will see the ones I grew closest with in the upcoming weeks and months.
Belize has a special place in my heart and never would have thought this study abroad would have impacted me in such ways as it did. From lasting friendships to unforgettable memories Belize did not disappoint. I plan to travel again and hopefully can do so with the friends I made from this trip. If you ever get the chance to travel to Belize, do it. I can say with confidence it will not disappoint. Enjoy my favorite reef pictures I took below 🙂
Patch of Elkhorn Coral.