This is post originally appeared on Life with Lil

Imagine a place.

In that place, there are trees that Pachamama created and many creatures that roam on the land. Deer, lombrisas, newts, and human people all exist together in peace. The birds sing their praises and all you can do is sit in the silence and soak it all in.

Now, in that place, think of the people. There are many faces, some look like you and some don’t, but they are all beautiful. You all have one shared common experience that bonds you. It is like being around many “long lost friends from the future”. It is a family.

In that place and with those people, you never need to watch what you say and you never catch your breath at what other people say. No one offends you and if they do, they want to learn how not to do it again. You don’t have to check your back to see how many people are in the room that would have your back, because they all do. Each room in this place is filled with love and hope and support. You feel fulfilled doing nothing because you are simply present and sometimes, that is enough. This place is amazing, my favorite place on earth.

This place, for me, is DDCSP.

Some may argue that is not a place. How can a program be a place? Well, I have said many times before and I will say it again, people are my place. With those people is my home. Wherever we all come from, together is home.

This past weekend was DDCSP homecoming, and I can’t think of a better name for the event. The second I got off the plane, all of my stress was lifted off my shoulders as I was embraced by Rachel, and then Pheej, and then so many more. With each hug, laugh and smile, my stress ran further away. It was replaced by a light. A light that only DDCSP can give me.

That light is lit by Pheej telling stories of growing up and learning to eat the WHOLE chicken until you hit bone. The light burns stronger as Jasmine tells me stories that resonate within my soul. It flickers brighter and brighter with each laugh from Rachel and Mayra. Every person I knew and met added to my light.

Walking around the woods with Carlos and Jasmine to take a mental break reminded me to breathe and relaxed my body in a way that hasn’t happened since the summer.

I am nervous to adapt back but happy to have this support network behind me when I need it to fall back on and even just to raise me up.

That is where I am at right now full of love.

To Rachel, Mayra, Pheej, Hannah, Jasmine, Carlos, Celine, Jacqueline, Martha, Brett, Angela, Jared, Kianna, Olivia, Wendy, Francess, Camille, Steven, Ethan, Leo, Joseph, Jose, Ramses, Mei Yook (and co) and SO MANY OTHER PEOPLE! Thank you for reminding me why we’re here.

Until next time I feel as moved to write,



About Lil:

Current Location: Waterville, Maine

Flight Count of 2019: 5

Hi all! My name is Lilli and I am currently pursuing an education in Environmental Policy and Studio Art from Colby College. I hope to work in immigration justice wherever I end up. I am originally from Milwaukee, WI and LOVE the Packers, Culvers, and Colectivo.  I am currently at Colby until the summer trying to balance many things of life and writing when I can. Follow along to watch me think through everything! Life with Lil