It was 15 years ago that I took a leap of faith and decided to leave my beautiful isla del encanto, Puerto Rico, (without knowing English) to start my new life in NYC. I remember that 18 year old girl who was afraid and full of uncertainties, thinking "Where I'm going next?" and "Am I making the right decision?" Today, as I'm writing this note, I can't help but think about my life in the present - being a digital nomad and traveling around the country of Ukraine 🇺🇦 - I hardly recognize my younger self! As I look back, I want to say to this young girl, based on what I know now:
1. Don't be afraid, things always work out and the universe provides.
2. Go and see the world for yourself. Only you can write your own story
3. Follow your dreams. You can do it. You can accomplish anything you put your mind to do.
4. You are beautiful just the way you are. You don't need to change for anyone, only be a better version of yourself by developing yourself and growing as you go.
5. Don't ever forget where you come from and that being Latina also means that you will be representing us (women and latinos) with every step you take, so do so with pride and respect.
6. It's a big world and we are all brothers and sisters. If you look at your ancestry, you might be surprised to find all the places you come from. So, lend a helping hand and give back as often as you can.
7. There are good people in every corner in the world.
8. Life is not always meant to be lived in one place, so go ahead and travel on! Life is an adventure and too short to squander!
In summary, LIFE often begins at the end of your comfort zone. Take risks, travel often, love deeply, make new friends, help others, only compete with yourself, hug those you hold dear tightly, kiss your loved ones a lot, and don't forget to smile. Sometimes you can't see the whole staircase...but don't be afraid to take the first step, or the next step, and so on!
Marilyn Monroe said: "Give a girl the right shoes and she can conquer the world!" Well, since I'm living my dreams in heels, I'd like to add to that - "Put the girl in the right city, and she will find a way to realize her dreams, anywhere in the world!"