I drank a LOT of tereré in the first few months with EVERYONE. It didn’t fee like I was doing much, and I worried that I was a “bad” volunteer. But that long community integration time has been paying off this second year. I’m glad I did worry to much about doing charlas and tallers (lessons and workshops) in my first few months, my language wasn’t good enough anyway. The result of waiting, is that now people KNOW me and are (mostly) willing to listen to me.
There is also something they talked about in training, called the “emotional rollercoaster.” It talks about the emotional ups and downs that most volunteers experience. This is the best link I could find. Basically it breaks down, in astounding detail, the highs and lows of service. There are several swings in the 10 weeks of training, then a little peak when you get to site, then a dip as you relies what exactly your in for for the next two years. It goes up again as you settle into life in the country. There is a peek at the year mark and a dip directly after; perhaps a indicating that your pleased with how far you have come in a year, and then the realization that you have a year left. Then it evens out for most of the second year. Finally, it dips at 2 to 3 months before your COS (close of service) date; the time during which you are worrying about the future, trying to finish up your work, and saying goodbye to the people you have grown to love and quite likely will never see again.
|You should all be impressed that I limited my self to just three tree planting photos...|
|One of the schools.|
|Piña Poty, the Women's Committee.|