With less than 24 hours until we take off for the International Nursing Service Project, reality has started to creep in. Both the Chicago and Addison campus students got together yesterday to participate in "Packing Day." From 10 a.m. until past 1 p.m., we took stuff out of boxes, bagged meds, sorted clothes, filled our suitcases and weighed our bags (over and over and over). 50 pound maximums are so restricting!!!
Looking around the room, it was amazing to see the sheer amount of donations we each brought in — from clothes, shoes, and toys to much-needed medications for cough, flu, vitamins, and allergies. The room was PACKED with these important items because of great friends and family who supported us each. Gigi Melendez, our professor for Community Nursing and leader of our trip, even mentioned how incredible the amount and quality of our donations were. I do want to personally thank everybody who donated to me and my fellow teammates. Because of each of you, we will arrive in Manila very well-equipped.
Now that the packing is done and over with, our suitcases sit quietly in the corner of the room and I sit here eagerly awaiting 2 p.m. tomorrow... I quickly remember that I'm going to be gone for 16 days. Days that I'll miss sleeping in my own bed, miss ordering a pizza on Football Sunday, miss my dog, miss seeing my friends, miss tutoring, miss my family, especially my beautiful niece (Hi, Ava!), and miss my husband. While I can't forecast what the next two and a half weeks will consist of, these next 16 days are going to count for something...something amazing for the 18 of us going on this trip.
By Aileen Russo
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