By Elena Villamagna (Sept. 21, 2020)
The lesson I am supposed to learn this year is to LET GO.
I made the perfect plan, everything was in place. I was getting ready for a two-month trip, through the organization WWOOF, to a farm in Taos, New Mexico where I would learn all about herbs and natural remedies. A week before I was about the make a 28-hour drive, I called to confirm with the farm. They told me they would be expecting $1000 a month for me to stay with them. That was a complete shock to me, nothing about money was ever mentioned in the past conversations we had and WWOOF specifically connects people for work-trade-stays.To be dramatic, my world went up into flames. I had looked so hard to find a farm that was the perfect fit for me and now a week before I was about to go on an amazing adventure to Taos, everything came crumbling down. I had a pity party for a few hours and then told myself I was being ridiculous.
This was meant to happen.
My whole life I have held onto the idea that I can plan my life perfectly and everything will run smoothly. I am beginning to realize I can only put the energy out into the Universe about the things that I want to accomplish and what I want to get out of life, but I cannot expect the middle part to go how I plan it to go. Here I am now, and my goals are clearly laid out, the in-between requires me to be flexible and go with the ebb and flow of life. However, that does not mean that I expect to sit back and just have things fall into my lap. It means that when I make my plans, I will incorporate the idea that the path I end up taking may not look anything like the current route I have laid out for myself.
After I made that realization, I got back onto the WWOOF website and sent an email to any and every farm that seemed interesting to me (I probably sent out about 20 messages). The next day I got a response back from a farm in Hawaii… HAWAII the place that I had originally wanted to go so badly but in the beginning was not working out. I spoke with the farm manager and the owner, and we all got along very well and share the same ideas surrounding food production, the environment, and how we want to live our lives. We set the date for October 1st and now I am getting everything lined up for this trip. I have spoken to the other three WWOOFers that will be there at the same time as me and coincidentally they are all gap year students as well. I am so excited for this part of my gap year to start, T-minus 10 days!
For now, my day-to-day life is pretty routine. Every day I wake up around 7:00 to talk with my mom before she goes to work, then I either do a workout or yoga (whichever I do in the morning I do the opposite at night), I do some house chores, I teach yoga, I translate letters from kids in Mexico to their sponsors for Love Volunteers, I listen to Spanish textbook audio recordings and check them for LearningAlly, and I do work for my doula certification through DONA International.
I am still living at home with my mom and my brother, who are the people that I mainly interact with. The only other people I really interact with are those at the yoga studio. I have felt a little lonely because all of my friends are at Universities but that will change once I go to Hawaii.
One really exciting event that happened recently was my first birth as a doula. My client had her baby on September 18th at 1:07 am. I got to the birthing center around 9:00 pm the night before and we did a lot of comfort work to help ease the intense feelings she was having (it was an all-natural water-birth). I stayed with her until 3:30 am to make sure that she was comfortable with the baby and to answer any questions she had. It was a really amazing experience and really confirmed for me that I want to be a midwife and do work related to births in the future. It was also the first birth towards my certification, so now I just have two more births to go and 5 more books to read before I am certified (I have completed all of the other work and trainings).
Hopefully next blog I will have some great pictures to share!