The packing and unpacking is done, for now. Pre-packed is a little box of things I know I’ll need in just a couple months. Measuring cups, tupperware, and the like.
I’m all moved into my newly painted bedroom at my parents’ house, doggy companion by my side constantly. I’m splitting my time between Athens, an hour away, and here. The change in scenery keeps me from getting too bored at any one place.
Since I’ve been home, I’ve spent a little time with friends, especially Annalee. We’ve seen Bridesmaids (hilarious), eaten too much food, and just chatted about how our lives have been these past few months (She’s just gotten back from study abroad in Europe.) Annalee is one those people who remind you how precious a friendship can be, even when separated by distance. We met as outcasts in 7th grade and have fostered a close bond since, even though we ended up graduating from different high schools and departing for different colleges the fall after. I try to use her as a reassurance when those fears start creeping in about loneliness and distance while in Cameroon. Annalee and I have made it despite distance, and have stayed close though divided by miles, perhaps I’ll have the same luck with other friends as well.
The worry of being forgotten is something I’ve picked up only recently. First my fears centered around being accepted into the Peace Corps, then, I was worried that the place I would be sent would be dangerous or too foreign to navigate. Now, those fears have been quelled and the ones taking their place focus on those I love essentially forgetting about me. I know my adventures will be exciting for the first 6 months, but what about month 16? Month 26? I worry that the letters and care packages will slow and soon, people will be saying “Georgia who?” I already have to start a brand new life in just two months. It’s hard to think I may go through the same process in another 29, when I return– It’s a feat making whole new friends in a place that doesn’t feel like home.
I suppose this stems at least partially from knowing that I’ve already seen many of my friends for what is likely the very last time before I leave, if not forever. Graduating from college is just like that, I hear. Combining the natural process of growing apart with me leaving the country seems to exacerbate the rate at which two people start heading in opposite directions. The harsh reality is facing that I probably wouldn’t see those people again even if we would have lived in the same city for the next two years, much less two different continents. People are just people, and often people choose different paths. I know those friends will be replaced, and I know that some friends will hold steadfast and prove themselves stronger allies than I may have realized initially, but the sinking feeling of not knowing is rough. Nobody wants to be forgotten.
But, you should always look on the up-and-up. I’ll try to think back to Annalee (who may very well be reading this…) Good friend are good friends, and I’ve got plenty. They stay good, too, even with miles in between.
Worst case scenario I’ll ply them with Spring Break 2012 in Cameroon, with the freedom to take up residence in my fancy hut. That, or I’ll have to keep this blog really, really entertaining.