Prompted by my own frustration and misgiving with my own work, I’ve been struggling lately. More accurately, I am realising how much I have to struggle ALL the time. And the main question of course is: why? Like many people who want to do good in the world, I am forced to compartmentalise my life into the situations where I can make a difference and those were I can’t. What I have the time to do and energy to care about and what I cannot. I realise more and more that I need to let go or ignore – a lot of things and matters – even if this is not very easy at all times. However, this does not seem to be a very sustainable model for me, for my systems, for my beliefs. Eventually, I am going to burn out and become so tired/angry/bitter (just name it!) that I’m not going to be of any use to anyone or to myself.
So lets say that I need to lie down and write this note ….and understand…..where does that lead?
I’ve spent the last 2 summers and winters and springs and of course autumns working with peace-building, conflict resolution, cross-cultural communication and building up an international peace seminar for youth. In many ways, this is a fabulous project and amazing parenthesis in my life, nothing to do with my older job in theatre, and a refreshing “break” from any academic work – since I am also employed at the University of Østfold (theatre as well). I get to be away from home, desk, computers, phones, books, sometimes literally in the field -maybe not in a foreign country, nor in a war zone nor difficult situation but field work is work field – even in Norway! And working with young people gives such an energetic push in one´s life. And that alone, feels and looks like a mission full of promises. However, to achieve this, I almost have to divorce myself from a real life. I do not go on vacations anymore. I do not have my family visiting even this year. For the time being, and though I am working on the project since almost a year, I get up at 6:30 and I go to bed around 1 in the morning. I feel completely “invaded” with this enormous task and responsibility of being in charge for A to Z for the budget, for the programme, the content, the speakers, the spaces, the organisation, the whole event – just name it! This year, we will have 180 teenagers coming from far away, Tanzania, Russia, USA, Cuba, South Africa, Iceland and so on. How is this going to work? Is it going to work? How many problems will I have to face? I deal every day with such pressures all of different natures, and I am embracing the busy summer schedule. I feel I am working myself to exhaustion.
My sister said the other day I should just leave all this behind and open a boutique.
I am dreaming of a boutique.