So I’ve been back in Chicago for 2 weeks now and it’s been good. The adjustment was not as bad as I thought it would be and my jetlag has not been that horrible. I miss waking up to mountains and the laid back South African culture the most. I was expecting to experience more culture shock, similar to when I came back from India, but everyday life continued and I simply merged into it. My family is still busy with basketball games and practices for both my brothers so life doesn’t stop and you have to adjust fast.
A week after I got back, I went to work in Chicago. The fast-paced work hustle in Chicago was a shock to get into for the first time. I feel like I am part of the “rat race” as we call it here in the U.S. I have been commuting from the western suburbs, but plan to move back to Evanston soon. My summer internship is great because it mirrors what I was learning in South Africa. I observed and experienced the inequalities in health care in South Africa. Now I am continuing to look at inequities in health care, but my research is focused on cancer care in the Chicagoland area. My work in South Africa as well as my global health courses have laid the ground work for me to continue working to make a difference in the area of public health.