The warmer it gets, the more nervous I find myself. I first noticed this a few months ago when the weather started to improve. The more sun, the more my legs shake, the more my mind wanders, the more I look around and think “What in here won’t belong to me in a few months?” Warm weather means it’s time to go and pack up my old life and brace myself for my new life, or it should be. But, like so many applicants on these blog sites, I don’t know where I’m going yet. It’s been almost a year since I pressed submit on an application and I’m still stranded in this awkward in-between phase.
Waiting on the Peace Corps has become the worst game of chicken I’ve ever encountered. They’ve told us not to call them, but god help me if I did not write up an email to the person who interviewed me so many months ago asking when I would find out something, anything. After pressing send I got a return to sender email immediately. I had forgotten that he had left a few months ago. Serves me right for being impatient.
If anyone has some tips for what I can do to prevent from going legitimately crazy (and think how much that would slow the process!), please, let me know. Waiting is like having a countdown with no zero. Or, a zero, but you don’t get to know where it is. I will be leaving. I will be moving to another country. I will not be speaking English the majority of the next two years. This all I know.
What I don’t know is when I leave. I don’t know what country I’ll be living in. I don’t know what language I’ll be attempting to communicate in. I don’t know how I’ll keeping in contact with ones I love, or if the ones I love will keep in contact with me. There are lots of ifs and maybes.
It’s frustrating to be asked at least once a week (usually more) when I’m leaving and where I’m going. I wish I knew, too! It’s hard for me not to have answers. I get flabbergasted when we turn a way I didn’t expect out of the driveway, not knowing what way an airplane will be heading to my new home in a few months is maddening. I want to be able to plan everything already. I want to make my lists of what to bring a what to not. I want to schedule my goodbyes and ‘see you laters’. It’s a stressful, odd feeling to have evaluate everyone you meet as ‘worth it’ or ‘not worth it’. I can’t afford to invest in a friendship that will end in a few months. Putting a relationship with anyone on pause when you know they’ll forget about you is just a waste of time for you and them. I’m trying to make sure that the relationships I really care about and will need for support are fostered properly and are extra-strong before I leave and weaken them with thousands of miles.
Worst of all, what if this long wait means they don’t want me? They do say that there are approximately two applicants for every spot in the Peace Corps. What if I’m the losing half? I suppose I’ll collect myself from the heap on the floor I’d undoubtedly fall into and work on serving my community here at home, then, try again.