Three weeks. 

Three weeks after months of waiting. 

Who knew so much could happen in such a short amount of time? After months of looking at files, doing paperwork, sending letters, and waiting for answers, three weeks pass quicker than one would think. We didn’t think that we would be going on trip one in person. We are in the middle of a worldwide epidemic. What person would fly internationally at such a time? Apparently us. 

Everyone talks about hurry up and wait, but they never quite explain it completely. It is like being a rubber band. Being a rubber band and stretched as far as possible without breaking, and then held there for months is what it feels like. And then one day, out of the blue, you snap. 

It is not fun. 

Three weeks to cancel all plans, figure out all the rules and regulations, and get what you need. 

Not. Fun. 

And then you are there, and you think everything will be fine. And then jet lag. And culture shock. And not being able to communicate with the kids. 

Life sucks. 

That was my first impression of Bulgaria. It is actually a very wonderful place…once you get used to it. It was surprising to me to go to where the kids were from. The cafe had an outhouse. Which was basically a hole in the ground. Very different from America. The food is very…unique. That is probably the hardest thing about coming over. There is very little food that is familiar. Even eating out all the time becomes stressful. It was very difficult to get used to seeing dilapidated buildings right next to fancy places. But after getting over that, it’s great. 

I got to see quite a few cool places with the kids, such as the Rila Monastery. The food is actually kind of good once you get used to it. Like, seriously, who uses soy sauce with chicken nuggets? Apparently Bulgarians. 

I am honestly really glad we managed to get an in-person trip, even though all the things. I don’t think that it would have gone so well if it were virtual. We wouldn’t have been able to do as many things with the kids as we did. I wouldn’t have been able to hug them and hold their hand when they needed it. If it had been virtual, I would not have seen where they come from. I would not understand as much as I do about their life and the culture they have been in their entire lives. And hey, if nothing else, I get to say that I travelled internationally and can remember it.


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