Thursday, August 02, 2007

Guilt ridden angst

Guilt-ridden angst night

I've been talking with some of the other westerners, all of whom are struggling with a combination of jet lag and culture shock. It's good to know I'm not the only one struggling with depression and guilt about all the stuff I have sitting around. My mother tried to give me a bunch of her clothes today and I couldn't take anymore. I have so much (none that fit right now -- but that's another story). The clothes she gave me were more than what I wore for 6 months in Cambodia. It's not the clothes -- Cambodian people in general have WAY more than I do. But we have so much stuff. Such clean streets. Such huge houses and green lawns. Paved roads. Grocery stores. Advertisements encouraging us to buy more and more. And I can't handle it right now. I can't walk though Wrays without getting flashes of the Mondulkiri Psar. I see someone's lovely green yard and see the yellowed patch of grass in Poipet where dozens of families are trying to have a picnic. I read the National Geographic in the waiting room and the pictures inside are more real to me than the doctors' office.

I'm struggling, and tired, and sleeping at odd hours, and depressed, and guilty, and overwhelmed.

So sorry that I haven't been out much. The little I've been out has been almost too much. Today I went the the doctor and almost cried at how clean the floor is. How much care was taken, compared to the 5 families stuck in one room with a woman coughing Tuburculosis everywhere.

So I'll try to get out more, but it's difficult enough staying in. There's nothing wrong with having things...and I'm trying so hard not to judge myself and judge others. But I have these pictures in my head now, that flash up in odd moments, and I want to cry almost all the time.

So, this too shall pass. Probably sooner than it ought.