I think what has been the most helpful is how understanding the family has been. We really focus on communication. Our mama tica wants to know about any issues we have and asks us how we feel about our time in her house.
During the first week, I was still extremely nervous to be in a new house in a foreign city. I immediately felt invited into her family when she asked me to watch a movie with her and her daughter. The three of us grabbed our blankets and spent the afternoon watching a movie together and eating popcorn. Things finally began to feel normal for me…a little strange watching a Tyler Perry movie in Spanish...but it was still pretty funny.
Every night my mama tica says goodnight with a hug and a kiss. I’m gonna be honest. This made me extremely uncomfortable. I am not a touchy feely person. But….here? I have to be. Everyone wants to stand right next to you, basically touching, and to constantly have physical contact. Once I started giving my mama tica a hug and kiss back, I could see her being appreciative of this action and she smiled so much. I’m still getting used to the hug after every meal…but hey, baby steps. Maybe when I come back to the states I’ll be hugging everyone…but then again maybe not:)