It’s been a long winding road to get here.

When I was sixteen I took a trip to Rio de Janeiro with my best friend and immediate family. However what could have been an amazing week in paradise mattered little to my depressed, jaded teenage soul.

I did my best not to bring everyone else down, but on the inside I was barely keeping my head afloat. We took a boat ride around the bay of Rio, and all I could think of was falling into the sea without a trace, letting it all swallow me…

That’s when my cousins intervened. Like two angels out of the sky, my twin nine-year old cousins (they’re Gemini too!) came over to me while I was staring at the sea lost in my head. I didn’t speak much Portuguese then, but they were fluent in the language of an unconditional love that I had not experienced before. Smile by smile, they opened my heart and taught my that Love was the meaning of life, and on the Full Moon that trip I swore not to live a conventional life. I promised the Moon to only follow the path of Love wherever it would lead me!

More than anything I wanted to embrace my Brazilian culture and live for a long time in Brasil. Life had other plans, and that dream had been buried under so other ambitions and relationships.

Until one relationship encouraged me to reawaken the longing I had to fully immerse myself in Brazilian life. She had a dream that I should go to Brasil and “have no thoughts of ever coming back”-her intuition was that it would be really good for me!

Due to visa constraints I do have to think about coming back-after 3 months. However I am sitting here in the Houston airport before I depart, reflecting on all the wonderful souls that have helped me arrive at this point and realize a long-held dream of mine. The gratitude for everything on my path-that’s why being grateful for Spirit is all-encompassing and saves space- swells within me as I look forward to reuniting with my cousins and my inner child who wants nothing but to dance in tune with the heartbeat of the Brazilian way of life.

What I am most excited about is that I will be on this trip with my brother, who I have not spent more than a week with since he joined the Coast Guard six years ago. This is his first time to Brasil since he was 4 years old, and the first time he’ll be meeting our wonderful twin cousins.

That winding road makes this all the more worth it! I’ve got plenty of memories to share and plenty of heart to experience savor this trip!