Sunday, October 10, 2010

Fall-ing Into Routine

Barev dzez:

I am really starting to feel at home in my host family and I think the feeling is mutual. At first, I found it hard to go about my daily routine without a "You can't do that!" Now, I think my family is getting used to my silly American ways and I am more comfortable standing up for myself and telling them, "I am different, I am American."
The subject of moving out was brought up this week. They decided it would be better for me to wait until Spring or Summer to move out because of harsh winters. Unfortunately, it was my plan to move out as soon as Peace Corps allows in December. Also, my host mom mentioned that since her husband and son will be going off to work in Russia in the next couple weeks, that she would be too lonely if I left too. This should be a difficult obstacle to overcome. I want to be on good terms with my family so I can frequently visit but I am so excited to live on my own. I think it will be easier to meet people if I live more in town. I will have more neighbors and live by the teachers and students in my school. Plus, with winter quickly approaching, a 5 minute walk to school sounds much more enticing than the 20 minute walk I have now.
School life has also felt much more comfortable as I am starting to fall into routine. I only go 15-20 hours a week because it is mentally exhausting to listen, speak, and discipline in Armenian for too many hours in one day! I feel much more relaxed at school now and am starting to get to know some of the children. This week, my site mate and I are starting after school aerobic clubs for 7th grade girls (think Zumba or Jazzercise). We will have a club at her school on Tuesdays and at mine on Wednesdays. I think this will make my work experience so much better!
Although it may seem like my life here is falling into place, there are daily ups and downs, which of course is expected in these first months as a volunteer. It is not the lack of showers, uncomfortable beds, or poorly paved roads that ruin my shoes that are the difficult things. Missing the familiarities of home from Chicago to Cedar Falls and everything and everyone in between is the hard part.
Yes karotum em dzez:
(I miss you all.)

"Life is queer with its twists and turns,
As every one of us sometimes learns,
And many a fellow turns about
When he might have won had he stuck it out.
Don't give up though the pace seems slow -
You may succeed with another blow."
- Anonymous