Truly and honestly, going to Samoa, Upolu for my 2019 HEFY humanitarian expedition was not my first choice.
At the start, I had my heart set on going to Fiji, Suva on the last week of June. I have always wanted to visit Fiji (for as long as I can remember at least) and I had already told my friends that that’s where I was going to go (having no real idea how the system actually worked XD). However a couple weeks before we had to sign up, I was looking into it a little more and because of the somewhat embarrassing fact that I have never had to desire to go snorkeling (which was on the list of sightseeing activities to be had in Fiji) I actually became less attracted to the idea of going to the island. So that day, I decided I wanted to go to Brazil… A couple weeks later (and only a few days before our date to sign up), Mozambique looked really cool! So I decided “Great, I’ll sign up to go to Africa!” and I was feeling good about it, my mom was on board and feeling good about it but guess what… I looked at the site again, the day that I had to sign up and said. “I really want to go Fiji.” …
I wish I could say this was an unusual occurrence for me to be so undecided but also so decided at the same time (because really, at one point I was set on going to those places), but I’m afraid things like this are part of my nature lol. So when the time came for me to log in with my mom and complete the registration form (literally 5:00 pm MT), I knew the exact expedition that I was going to put my name into. However, at that moment it was my mom’s turn to be undecided! (Bless her heart. She really didn’t take long to decide to come!) There was one thing I had suspicions of and then soon came to be very sure of not much later; these things fill up very quickly, especially in the most popular expeditions. So naturally, if one doesn’t sign up as soon as it opens, the opportunity to go on that one expedition that your heart was so set on could be missed entirely.
And thus it was- but it wasn’t because of anyone’s uncertainty! Turns out, there was a problem with the site, and the account we were trying to use to register. So we called the HEFY offices a couple times, and had to get it figured out. By the time that was finished, and we got on to see if Fiji, Suva was still available- well, you can guess what we found; the female parent builder spot was taken for the exact trip I’d wanted!
I was a little crushed… But we still felt the need to hurry and get my second choice(s), so we went back into Mozambique’s applications to see which trips were still available for us, but turns out, we misunderstood some information given by someone at their offices (!!) and through a complicated turn of events– We had to call again to have them put us in the trip we wanted. Which ended up with me going in to the page about Samoa, because as the lady on the phone said, “it’s very similar to Fiji” and the moment I took a look around and saw that the dates would work for me (Which was a very stressful few minutes, by the way, just hoping that the spot we wanted wouldn’t get taken again) I was sold! And just like that, we were signed up to go to Samoa, on June 18th.
Despite being in the spur of the moment, and having to make a super quick decision, I do believe there was a reason; but instead of asking “Why Samoa” maybe the real question is why HEFY at all?? Travel is a huge thing for new, and I’ve wanted to go international for YEARS but why start so big (in my opinion)? Why a humanitarian trip??? That’s the big question I want to focus on here.
The first reason is for travel. I am obsessed with the idea of going to a new place, meeting those people, eating their food and understanding their culture! Pretty much nothing sounds more exciting to me! And from what I’ve seen and heard about the Pacific Islands I’m already obsessed and in love! xD
The second reason is because I believe that my calling (or one of) in life is to help people. I don’t think it’s any certain kind of people (kinds, adults or teens like me) or that it’s under any specific capacity. Because really, I want to make an impact in them all (Which may or may not be terribly realistic. But, fingers crossed) For right now, this is the big thing that I see myself doing to help. For the people or Samoa, who I love already! Just thinking about going to serve them fills me with joy and I cannot wait!
The third reason, and I dare say most important is that, I know without a doubt that this trip isn’t just for me or my mom or the Samoans or anyone like that, even though we will all be impacted beyond anything I know I can imagine right now; This trip is for God. For my Heavenly Father and Brother who look down on us from the clouds, I want to do this for them. To please and serve them, to show my gratitude and devotion. Because of this, I know that we– with His help– will be able to get everything together that we’ll need in order to go, and fulfill that purpose that He has for us, and it will all be worth it! X)
Thanks so much for reading, you guys! Be sure to come back for more updates!!