I keep trying to think about how I’m feeling. About my trip, about being home.
But my brain had gone dull, the synapses not sparking. My eyes want to stare into nothingness. And my body goes from being desperately hungry, like there’s literally a hole in my stomach, to being exhausted.
I wake up early in the morning, when it’s still dark out, thinking of what I still have to do. Selling the tote bags the girls made at the Women’s Interlink Foundation. Choosing the organizations to donating the remainder of the money that was given to me for the trip. Figuring out how to work long term with Soma and the women in her village. Thinking about how to start working on my own art again.
By the time I get up, feed the animals and eat breakfast, my energy level had evaporated. Just thinking of placing an order for my Show Your Soul posters makes me want to climb back into bed and pull the blankets over my head. It just seems too hard to do.
But when I think about the kids in the daycare, in the Red Light District in Kolkata, that makes me cry. Then I know what I’m feeling.
An overwhelming despair at how vulnerable they are. And these are the kids, girls and boys, who at least have a chance for something other than the almost certain life of abuse they were born into. To think of all the kids who don’t…..well I just haven’t let myself do it. I haven’t let myself think too much about any of it.
I can see that now.
Every day we went from one place to another. Meeting people hearing their stories. Stories of brutality, and oppression, success and hope, stories with unknown endings. Gathering information in words and pictures. And through it all being careful not to allow myself to feel too deeply.
Now the question is what do I do with it all?
How do I use the experiences and information I’ve acquired to do something good?
My rational mind tells me to take it one step at time. One small action after another. But my body is weary. I’ll get to it she says. Right now I need to do nothing. Right now I need to sleep.