Life Sure is a Riot

I have struggled so far this week to come up with something coherent to write about for the blog. There is so much I wish to share, but at the same time can’t find the words to say anything at all. Some fragmented sentences that only express how little I really know about the situation here, and some frustration with myself.

This past week has kept all of us here on our toes no doubt. Even the events which were planned, scheduled, and explained surprised us with unexpected twists that will forever shape my memory of the occasion. I will admit the constant strain of not knowing what is going to happen next in every aspect of my life has been overwhelming.

There are aspects of the unknown that I can accept, and almost expect. For example, this last week I went to the field with the governance program for the first time. I was briefed on what the purpose of the meeting was going to be, and given some expectations on what my role should be. However, there were many surprises for me down the line, such as an extremely drunk man interrupting my first community meeting and harassing me. These things I can deal with. I can even handle the slightly unstable political situation. Politicians and media have been good about making it very clear when and what is going to happen on a day to day bases. There are parts of your day that you are never going to expect, and that is the way it is no matter what country you are in at the time.

But there are also aspects of the unexpected that are not quite so easy to deal with. This week seemed to throw all of it at us at once. An unexpected riot in town on Tuesday, worries of secondary protests on Wednesday, and then for me, unexpected health complications starting on Thursday and continuing throughout the weekend. It would be a stressful week with just one of these, let alone all of them happening at once.

While, yes it is stressful that these things happen, that shouldn’t be the end of the story. It’s how they are dealt with, and what you make of them that will define how events turn out. That’s what I’m trying hard to focus on now. This week has already started off pretty great. Spent the day today bagging nutri-flour that will be sold to help ensure the sustainability of different programs here at KMET.

Overall, if I’m saying anything in this post it’s: given everything that has happened I’m okay, and I’m striving ever forward. I am determined to make the most out of my experience. And I know the next post I send it will have a much more interesting topic.

Cassie Scheiber ’17
Kisumu, Kenya