A Letter to Pre-Peace Corps Coco

Hiya Buddy,

I know you’re lying in bed right now, paralyzed with fear, staring at your ceiling, wondering what you’ve signed yourself up for.  You’re imagining all the worst case scenarios as well as dreading the dark abyss of the unknown.  I’m proud of you for getting out of bed to distract yourself from your fears, but you really don’t have much to be worried about.  POR EJEMPLO…

You’re feeling a semi-irrational fear that you are going to be brutally attacked.  It could happen, but Nicaragua is the safest country in Central America.  You are going to be fine.

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Photos from the beginning

You’re worried your Spanish won’t be up to par.  Surprisingly, your Spanish is not that bad.  Plus, you’ll have 3 months of intensive Spanish training.  Plenty of successful volunteers came in with little to no Spanish experience.

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Photos from the beginning

You’re worried you’re actually not qualified for the work.  You know more than you think, and you’ll receive plenty of training in the first 3 months.  You will also be surrounded by brilliant, motivated people.  Learn from them.

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Photos from the beginning

Now that we’ve addressed the fears, here are a few words of advice.

Try your best not to procrastinate.  2 years goes by fast.

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Photos from (almost) the end

Learn from the people around you.  It’ll be easy to feel competitive, but you’ll realize that it’s more productive to see other volunteers as a learning experience.

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Photos from (almost) the end

 

Even though it’s only 2 years and you know the termination date, don’t be afraid to put down some roots.

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Photos from (almost) the end

You’re going to be OK, friend.  Your method that will help the most at the beginning? Be present.  Also, get a good night’s sleep.  You’ll need it during PST.

Love,

         Coco

 

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