Tuesday, October 7, 2014

Back to being plain Jayne

I had this incredible dream: I was working for a major international organization that was helping Ukraine with a range of issues, from recovery of armed conflict in the East, preparations for winter amid major infrastructure damage and the displacement of more than 300,000 people because of Russian aggression in the East and South, to addressing severe corruption, to addressing some of the worst HIV/AIDS and TB and other health issues in all of Europe. People all around me were working on these and other issues, and I was writing about their work. My phone rang a lot. There were lots of important meetings that were rarely boring. Every day was an adventure. Every minute was filled with something to do - and I had SO much to do. I felt so important! I even glowed! I took pictures almost every day.

But it couldn't have been true, because I'm in Germany, and it's raining, and there's not much to do, and no one here is talking about Ukraine, and I'm just the usual unemployed not-so-welcomed non-German speaking girl from the USA who no one knows what to do with. And I'm not glowing. And there's nothing to take photos of. 

I sure loved that dream.  

I knew re-entry would be hard. I thought I had prepared myself. I was wrong. I'm completely lost. My work email still works, and I opened it today, and there was a sea of important emails - about visitors from abroad and new initiatives and even some questions from people who didn't know I was already gone. And I almost burst into tears. 

This is going to be so much tougher than I thought. 

Shout out to my friend Lis in Bonn who made me feel oh so important again, and very, very welcomed, for a few hours here in Deutschland.

I'll get to feel important again next week, when I go to Ireland to present at a conference. But until then... well, here I am. I actually do have a few more photos from Kyiv, but no way to get them off my camera and upload them. I'll do that in a couple of weeks, when I'm back in the USA. I wonder if I'll cry... 

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