F.I. is like a bright light in my life. The women I work with are so intelligent and passionate. None of us are being paid for what we do. But we do it with professional ethic, combined with passion and intelligence, respect for each other, critical analyses of scholarship, open-mindedness to variety… Its a constant inspiration, for me. Really it is. And I value every single person, every small contribution. You Small pieces make up the whole that we are.
Maybe you expect that by 23,
my impatience will mature
and not see that instead
my patience has sunk down to my feet
Maybe you expect by 23,
that walking will eventually
flatten my slipper
and that I will stop at this harbour
and find a home to be.
Then across this large sea
My impatience waits for me.
[Actually this poem came to mind yesterday. I was partly inspired by the flattened condition of my long-worn slippers. Those slippers travelled many destinations with me. I do not like to divulge personal feelings.
I am a very impatient person. I want to do things NOW NOW NOW. My move to U.K. at 16, my insistence on travelling to Afghanistan at 17, erratic travel habits and the creation of F.I. is a result of that impatience. Some may call it enthusiasm for life. This enthusiasm has often been mistaken for youth, idealism, immaturity (right or wrongly) – so impatience has many connotations. It has sometimes worked to my benefit.
Between August to October, I felt my impatience (enthusiasm) for life’s creative process dissolve. The wait for my work permit left me very uncertain. I waited and did very little with life. Quite ill, always tired. [“Patience sunk to my feet”]
I had envisioned that by 23 I would have something concrete, that my path would unfold magically before me. I had worked hard for where I am. It did not come easy. I am very passionate about what I do. I work long hours for it. (But Perhaps the weird coincidences that led me to U.S. deceived me). I had believed I found my temporary destination. I would stop shifting from one country to the next and find a place to call home. (The sense of ‘no-home’ tends to appear often in my sense of self. Don’t know if it is because of a loss of a home, or 3rd culture syndrome? I seem to always be finding a home (physical home, a person, a country?) [“Stop at this harbour”]
[“Then across this large sea, my impatience waits for me.”] — After turning 23, on the 15th of October, stunted by the realization that I am constantly giving myself to projects (women’s rights, children’s education) and people (friends and loved ones too), and working long hours — that somehow I left myself behind. Then when I gaze out there at the horizon, I see a silhouette of myself (my enthusiasm, or impatience) calling out to me. And it reminds me to enjoy life. To live carelessly. To enjoy irresponsibility.