Thursday, July 5, 2007

missing Aasta

It’s late and I should be tired and going to sleep. Jason is wrapped up in a cocoon of blankets in bed right now, unable to fight it off any longer. I am just happy to have him here, in my room, in my daily life even if it is just for a few short weeks. Cooking dinner is more fun, cleaning up the dishes afterwards is a simpler task and splurging on pounds of candy brought from home is just more exciting with him around.

There is so much going through my mind right now, a million things on my to-do list before I leave for my vacation on the 13th. Work is keeping me busy and having Jason here is keeping me entertained. With all of this going on my friend Aasta smsed (sent a text message) and said that she was in the hospital with a knee injury. The next thing I know she is calling me and telling that she is being medically separated for the injury – meaning PC is sending her home and she is finished with her service. It was a sudden decision made by PC Washington and I’m not entirely convinced it was a good one based on the lack of information they obtained about her injury. But what’s done is done and she is already home and figuring out the next step of her life. My boss is amazing and understanding and had no problem with me taking a few days to spend with her in Pretoria before she left.

For a brief moment, while we were all sitting around her expensive room at the guest house, I wanted to be in her shoes. I didn’t envy her bum knee but she was going home and facing the next phase of her life – she wouldn’t have to deal with the ineptness of the PC office, the daily frustrations of communicating in the village & at work, the general indescribable feeling of being a PCV. I wanted to be in her place, seeing my family and not having to deal with constantly being tested. It was a funny feeling because I know I love where I live. I love the work I do but some days I guess it is a conscious effort to say, yes, I’m going to stick out the whole 2 years. Sometimes I wish a decision could be made for me to be done with it and get back to living an “easy” life. But it’s always a fleeting feeling and though I looked at her and wanted to be in her place I knew that it wasn’t meant to be like that. I know I would be crushed as she is, to leave my friends, my new family, my work, all of the future projects that I have planned – it would be difficult to do that knowing that there is still so much I want to do and see and experience. So I guess if I can see that happening to my friend and share her pain, I can appreciate that staying here, my own conscious effort to, is really where I’m supposed to be. And for Aasta, she has a different path to discover despite it not being the one she planned on following. I am glad that our paths crossed – she’s an amazing person and will come out on top despite how life trips up her plans.

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