Tag Archives: people living with HIV

Time

In a lot of ways I feel like I’m living in an age of prehistory. I generally enjoy being unplugged and off the grid, but once in a while it bothers me how unknowledgeable I am about current events and issues of the moment. The concerns of my days have very little to do with things that affect the rest of the world. Instead I’m wrapped up in my own small community. My successes aren’t particularly grand and my failures don’t matter outside of the scope of a few kilometres. I guess it’s just easy to feel insignificant.

I’ve had a good few days here recently, despite my tone. A couple of friends visited for the 4th and helped me with a workshop I planned for my group. The event was successful, and I feel accomplished in my goals of jumpstarting and diversifying interest. My friend contributed her knowledge of craft making and income generation – sustainable cash flow is an important concept for my budding organization. We also focused our attention on psychosocial support since it usually falls by the wayside. Most of the other interventions I’ve tried to establish some sort of consistency with the group have failed, so I hope some of this workshop catches on.

My other primary venture has been gaining traction as well, and there has been a recent rise in the number of circumcisions being done at the hospital. Everything moves slowly here, but having tangible numbers is encouraging at such early stages of our mobilization efforts. Collaborations with other agencies have helped a great deal. This is the project I’m most motivated by right now, and if my contributions cause real interventions I will feel successful.

So why is there such a sudden feeling of discontent? Perhaps I’m affected by the awareness of my mortality – and a quarter-life crisis. In less than 2 weeks I’ll turn 25. Milestones are often the loneliest times here, though I’m lucky to have great people in my life (both home and in Botswana) to remind me I’m not forgotten. The other thing milestones are good for is initiating panic about the future. Do I have anything to show for my early twenties? Where will the next 5 years take me? The concept of time is wearing on me.

I have come full circle with my facial hair.

Cheers

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Pressure

I’ve come to terms with the fact that my life is going to proceed at a consistently inconsistent rate for the next year or so. With my COS date less than 1 year away, every day seems more important than the last – the pressure to complete projects is mounting. I would say that I have been steadily improving on the communication issues I’ve had in the past with my support group, but there’s still work to be done. The group still follows a rhythm, vacillating between active and dormant; unfortunately life gets in the way and I’m sometimes left with a lot of things that must be done and no one to participate. The distractions of daily life are the most frustrating part, beyond all my other roadblocks.

When I do manage to get a decently sized group of my members in the same room, we have lengthy discussions about current issues and growing our organization. My goal lately has been to pull the members into more responsibility. I may have been jumping the gun before when I wanted to simply hand out tasks like homework. One thing that has always surprised me about this group is our lack of attention on psychosocial support. I’ve tried, periodically, to open discussions about emotions relating to the virus’s social impact, but to no avail.

I’m searching for money with my primary assignment. Specifically, my search for funds focuses on Leretlhabetse Supoprt Group’s HIV Resource Centre. The plans are constantly shifting, but I’m connecting with some potential investors. We’ve arrived at the time when I must be constantly moving forward on this project if I hope to complete it in the next year before I close my service. It’s all very exciting and nerve-racking. It’s hard to believe, but this time next year I will be done.

This weekend I’ve decided to go to Ghanzi with a few friends for the Winter Metal Fest. I am beyond excited. This show has potential to be the strangest thing I have done in Botswana. I anticipate seeing metal cowboys decked out black leather and chains. This will also be the first live music show I’ve been to in quite a long time. I’ll be sure to take some pictures!

Cheers

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