From the very beginning, today was full of countless goodbyes. After what has truly been a life-changing semester, it is now time to go back to the U.S. and get ready for my senior year of college. I have been in denial about going home for the last few weeks (so much so that I have yet to begin packing)! Italy has inspired me and changed me; it has taught me that the most important thing in life is to live fully and deeply every minute of every day. Rome has become my home and the idea of leaving here tomorrow is daunting to say the least. Of course I want to see my family and friends back in the States, but I do not want to leave this eternal city that has shown me who I am and given me the confidence to be that person.
There have been many tears and laughter throughout my time here, and today was no different. I laughed with my friends as we reflected upon all that has happened since we been here and cried as I said bye to them. And I cried even more as I said goodbye to my Italian teacher, Antonella. Out of all of the professors I had at IES Abroad, she was the hardest to say goodbye to because Antonella made me love the Italian language. She also made me feel comfortable speaking Italian regardless of the mistakes I so often made. It was with her help that I was able to achieve the level of fluency and comprehension in Italian that I now have.
The goodbyes are over for today, but tomorrow will be my hardest goodbye yet. Tomorrow I will have to say goodbye to both my host mom and Rome. My host mom has treated me as if I were her own daughter, and I have no idea how I am going to survive without her amazing cooking and her motherly warmth. And Rome, well Rome is home and it is never easy to leave home.
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<p><span style="color: rgb(29, 29, 29); font-family: Arial, Verdana, sans-serif; font-size: 12px; line-height: normal; background-color: rgb(237, 237, 237);">My name is Natalie Maria Reynoso and I am currently a junior at Wheaton College, Norton, MA where I study religion and psychology. I am a passionate Catholic and an avid reader and writer. I have always loved writing because it provides me with a way to better understand the world and my place in it.</span></p>