Relationship Reflection

Healthy relationships are the key to a happy and healthy life!! Some of us function better alone, and some of us strive when people are around us. Wherever we go – people are there. With my time traveling, I have built many types of relationships. Friends that would stay forever, friendships that wasted time, relationships that opened up doors and some that make you shake your head. We learn so much from each other and sometimes coming out of our comfort zones, open up relationships you never even knew existed.


1.My parents

I can still remember my mother’s eyes filling up with tears when I told her I want to travel and teach. “Only one year,” I remember I promised. I am currently going into my sixth year living abroad. This was an enormous step into the unknown. I am a small town farm girl that spent most of my time in mud and with animals and hated going to the city with all the busy things. I packed my bags and off I went.

Without my parents support, this whole transition would have been a disaster. I remember calling home in my first few months a little sad because I miss a decent piece of steak and the quietness of the farm and my mother then replying, “only a little bit more.” I knew both my parents really wanted me to be home and close to where it’s “safe,” but I also saw in their eyes that I had the opportunity that they never had. After my third year abroad, they finally stopped asking when I will be coming home for real. They helped me so much in the first few months with care packages, letters, and simple messages. “Go see the world, my child” – was in every message.

I went to boarding school for 12 years, so being away wasn’t really a problem. There was so much excitement in EVERYTHING around me. Without my parents being strong – I possibly would not have made it this far.


2.My Boyfriend

What a “cliché,” I know. But in all seriousness, my boyfriend has been my BIGGEST supporter. In my years of traveling, I have never felt that I needed “that” person. I was pretty happy before I met him and I think that contributed to the fact that we have a very healthy relationship. We both were happy people and knew what we wanted. We did not need each other; we wanted each other. Now, as lame as this might sound, Brendan is honestly my biggest fan. He picks me up when I have fallen; he pushes me to be better and greater. He makes me realize more than I even think I can handle or do. With him by my side, I can concur the world.

Believe me; we do have our differences. I am South-African, and he is Canadian. Our foundations, pieces of our culture, some beliefs even are different, but we manage to get along just fine. With the key points being communication, honesty, and respect, our relationship manage to grow every day. We are both out of our comfort zones and a very raw version of ourselves. I do believe that this is the best way to be with one another.

He is part of the reason why I am doing my MA in Early Childhood Development. He made me realize my full potential and all the great things I can reach.

All we need sometimes is that someone who believes in us!


3.My Girlfriends

In the photo posted below, we represent five different nationalities. That means five different ways of being, doing and saying things. Some of us are more girly than the other, the tomboys, the artists, the fashionistas, we are such complete different human beings. When moving to another country, making friendships can go two ways. Great – or it just does not work. With these girls, I can just be myself. I did take us a while to get used to each other and our ways, but very soon we realized how important these relationships we are building are. This might be a horrible thing to say, but with a lot of people I meet during my travels, I would never have even looked at twice in my home-country to befriend. I tell my girlfriends this a lot too. But we are all in the same boat. We are far from home, we want to travel, and we want to teach. With the same goals in mind, all our differences seem to disappear.

In my first few years, I had many friendships – but they were just there. As I got older and we all mature, we realized that these bonds we create can save us. We cry together, oh boy do we fight, we make up, we laugh, we judge each other, but these are friendships and relationships we could never change. Being friends with people I would have never been friends with at home, showed me just how we look at the cover or first impressions of a book. Once we start to read, the world starts to change, and we grow so much as individuals and together. With our cultural differences, beliefs, and backgrounds, we come together, open-minded and just be there for each other.


My top 5 reasons why relationships are important:

1. Relationships fulfill your most important need of all

2. Relationships are the place where your greatest joy comes from

3. Only through relationships can you give lasting impact to others

4. Through relationships, you have the people to support you in times of trouble

5. Eventually, relationships are the only things that matter

“When people are dying they do not think about their achievements and awards. They don’t care whether they are rich or famous. All those things become meaningless when people are face-to-face with death. All they want is having the people they love around them. They want the warm of love to be with them in their last moments. Nothing else matters. They realize that, eventually, relationships are the only things that matter. We should not wait until that moment come. We’d better realize it now.” -written by Life Optimizer



9 thoughts on “Relationship Reflection

  1. youngminds12345blog says:

    Hello Janelle,
    Thank you for sharing your blog on relationships and partnerships. You are an amazing person doing marvelous things in your life. Wow! Traveling abroad must be exciting. I am a grandmother and I can’t even imagine the thought of traveling abroad. However, your experiences will stay with you the rest of your life. It will mold you and help you to become the person you want to be. The culture and diversity you are experiencing is outstanding. I look forward to learning with you and from you this semester, Have a delightful week!


  2. youngminds12345blog says:

    Hello Esthe,
    I apologize for calling you the wrong name. We were just talking about the importance of pronouncing our students name right in our discussion board and I wrote the wrong name in your post. Your post was amazing and I look forward to reading your next post. Have a fantastic weekend!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. marybeffa says:

    Hi Esthe,
    I really enjoyed the quote that you used at the beginning of your post, “healthy relationships are the key to a happy and healthy life” I think that is such a true statement. It sounds like your parents and boyfriend are a great support system for you! Does your boyfriend join you on your travels?


  4. Tami says:

    Hi Esthe,
    Terrific post! I can so identify with much of what you said in just introducing your post. Travelling literally and otherwise outside of your comfort zone really does broaden one’s horizons and allows you to discover things within yourself, both positive and negative, that you might not have known were there. Our bonds do make us stronger and there are always lessons to be learned from all relationships whether positive or negative. Keep those healthy lines of communication open with your parents, boyfriend and girlfriends, those really are what matter at the end of our days; not our things but the quality of our relationships.
    You pic with your girlfriends remind me of my time abroad. Stay in touch with each other even after you all decide to ‘move on’ perhaps i different directions.


  5. Makeya Corbett says:

    Hi! Nice post. I like how you incorporated pictures of those who are important to you. I also like your 5 points about relationships I do agree that eventually relationships are all that is going to matter. I think in order for us to grow and become better people we all need someone to be there by our side and to voice their opinion while still respecting ours.


  6. Kichara Robinson says:

    Wonderful relationships, they all played an important role in your development and your success. Family to me is important, they understand you more and it is wonderful when you have that type of support throughout life. Friends are an added in addition, they can either help or harm you, however they are still there to teach you life lessons, which is always important. Thank you for sharing your meaningful relationships and I enjoyed reading.

    Kichara Robinon


  7. janearlychildhoodblog says:

    Hi Esthe
    I think I am slowly becoming one of your biggest fans as well. I believe after reading your post that you left nothing to be said about relationships again. Amazing work! I agree that relationships are the key to a healthy and happy life but it is true that some of us function better without them. I don’t know how you can function for that long without your mother’s cooking though. That’s a NO, NO for me. Keep up the great work!


  8. Elizabeth Young says:

    Hello Esthe! I love your blog. It is very beautiful. I like what you said about relationships. You know before I met my husband 28 years ago. I was one that loved to be alone, but now I love being in a relationship with my husband. Wow! You seem to have been doing a little bit of traveling huh! But I can understand where you are coming from. People do come into your life for a reason that why you learned from them. That’s alright.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s