Saturday, April 13, 2013

I'm Headed to Indonesia!

Oh hey, didn't see ya there! For those of you who don't know me, my name is Mallory. My name literally translates to "unlucky one." However, I can't say I consider myself unlucky because... I just found out I get to spend my senior year in Indonesia with the Kennedy-Lugar YES Abroad program. Now that the shock has (sort of) worn off, I decided I could tell you a little about my journey here. It all started way back in October. I had found out about YES through another gal from my town who is currently on the program. Anywho, I slayed away at the application for months. I couldn't tell you the amount of times I changed my essay answers, my country preferences, and my host family letter. I wanted that application perfect. My hard work paid off when I got my semi-finalist notification. (Just a heads up for all you future YES applicants, when they say they will notify you in late february, they literally mean the last possible hour of February.) Three short weeks later, I was on a plane to D.C. for the In Person Selection Event, AKA, IPSE. I could spend a whole blog post on the IPSE, so for now, let's just say it was one of the best weekends of my life. I had honestly thought that my YES journey was over. There were so many amazing, passionate kids that wanted the scholarship just as badly as I did. So yesterday, when notifications started coming out, I was just trying to feel happy for all the kids that were getting them. Then, my phone vibrated, the vibrate pattern that indicates that I have an email. I was expecting another email from Pinterest or Spotify. "YES Abroad Program in Indonesia" was all I saw. I threw my hands to my head, screamed, jumped on the bed, screamed some more. I was babysitting my younger brother and sister. They both started questioning what I was screaming and freaking out about. I just scooped them both up into a big hug and started bawling. I couldn't talk. I started calling all of my friends, unable to really tell any of them what was going on. I paced around my house for a solid twenty minutes before finally sitting back down at the computer to see where all my other friends were going. I couldn't believe it. To be honest, I still can't believe it. I have never felt so many contradicting emotions before. On one hand, I've never been more ready for anything. On the other, I'm absolutely terrified. I'm excited, but uneasy. Ecstatic but, apprehensive. My good friend from Maryland, (Shout out to Charis who is going to Morocco), text me and said, "What the heck were we thinking when we applied to this?" My feelings exactly. All I know for sure is that I'm ready. I'm ready for this adventure and I'm ready for my life to change. And the countdown begins.