This post is for you, but also for me. Over these past (almost) seven months I’ve been in Peace Corps, there has been one consistent and wonderful aspect of my life that has only ever improved as things here got tough: you. You have written in with beautiful comments, reached out with empathy, support, and kindness, and sent hilarious emails that had me laughing to myself long after all my friends thought it was funny. I want to sincerely thank you for following along on this little adventure, and reaching out of the blogging abyss to say, “Yes! We’re listening!”
It is with that gratitude in mind that I am taking a little break from the blog-o-sphere. Blogging has always been something I did for me as a means of pursuing my love for writing. I have always kept a deal with myself that if blogging ever became more of a burden than a pleasure, that I would take a little break. While blogging (and your response to my blogging) has gotten me through the last few months, a few recent events (and by recent, I mean I laid awake last night thinking about this) has given me pause.
First, I have a confession. I don’t want to go back to my village.
I know. I have a new house, a new village, and a most excellent friend visiting for a week to help jump-start my new life there. I should be thrilled. Motivated. Excited! But, I am not. Frankly, I’m dreading it.
To make things worse, I have incredible friends and family (and blog readers) who do nothing but support me and encourage me every step of the way. While I couldn’t be more grateful for them, all that love sometimes makes it pretty dang hard to want to stay here. “Why,” I ask myself, “am I here doing this when I could be at home with all these sensational people enjoying the easy life (and cold beer)?” Well, dear reader, we both know that I’m here specifically because it isn’t easy, but that’s a tough thing to remember at insomnia ‘o’clock.
But Zambia, like any good hiking trail, has its own little bit of “trail magic”. Just when things are their worst, something perfect happens. Yesterday, that perfect thing was a volunteer enjoying her last day at the provincial house before her close of service. She told me that there were many months during her (very successful) service where she did not want to go back to her village. She didn’t necessarily want to quit Peace Corps (and I don’t, either), but she just didn’t want to be here. But, she said, you have to go. You have to be there. Because buried beneath all the frustrations and uncomfortable things are those little golden moments of hope and friendship and all the other gems that make life worth living.
“If you aren’t there, you’ll miss them.”
And so, I’m going back to the village and taking a one month hiatus from blogging. Fear not! This is not permanent. I will return, as scheduled, on October 5th with new content, photos, and stories from my little piece of Africa/almost Tanzania. This break will help me look more inward, rather than focusing outward on all the American people and places I miss, and I think this blog will be better for it about a month from now.
So, thank you again for all your readership, your support, your love. I’ll be back soon.
In the mean time, fish on.