„Everything is just a phase.“ Anna Veigl, head of kulturweit, tried to eliminate all our fears and doubts about our volunteering right away. This quote seems so negative, when it really isn’t. Temporary phases not only include bad times, but also great and unforgettable memories and I’m curious to experience a lot of them, especially the latter, soon!
The seminar is over now and the past two days thankfully gave me the chance to wipe away the worries and make room for excitement – 6 months in Trujillo! Whee!
Being on the plane makes looking back easy, it seems so natural that there’s only happiness when thinking about my voluntary stay. But that would be hypocritical. The last days, I realised that I have many open questions concerning basic human properties, society’s norms and values and also myself. I felt overwhelmed by the number and also the intense complexity of these questions that seemed so trivial. Why do humans discriminate others? Which stereotypes are acceptable as jokes or simplifications and which aren’t? How do I want to stay in contact with my friends all over the world? How might this interfere with my wish to live in the present and make the best of Peru?
I often asked myself whether I’m adequately prepared for my volunteering and discussed this with close friends. How am I supposed to teach children and organize projects if I haven’t made up my mind yet and don’t entirely understand most of the issues surrounding me?
After several hours of overthinking and discontent, I decided that it isn’t necessary to have the perfect answer to everything in life and also that this probably is even impossible. I prefer to keep seeking and like this constantly reflecting, even if it’s hard to accept that there might be neither right or wrong nor any final destination.
To end this philosophical excursion positively, I’d like to refer to the entry’s title. Travelling and volunteering is an open door that might close one day. I learned about this metaphor through a German science academy that included a ritual where the participants enter at the beginning and leave in the end through a wooden door to symbolise the academy’s frame. Volunteering is a similar door but with the tiny difference that it might never close entirely.