11 septembre 2012


Today is September 11, 2012, the 11th anniversary of the attacks on the World Trade Center. It is also the day on which my Peace Corps service comes to an end. As of 12:01 this morning, I am officially medically separated and am therefore an RPCV (Returned Peace Corps Volunteer). In normal talk, this means that my seizures have not proven to be immediately curable, and I have therefore been given the Peace Corps equivalent of an honorable discharge. It’s sad, in that it means that my service is finished less than halfway through, but it’s happy in that at least I still get full access to the education and employment assistance that are two of the biggest perqs of service.

So what comes next?

To be honest, I’m not quite sure. As I’m having seizures, I can’t legally drive. As a car is absolutely necessary in Wilmington and more-or-less necessary in RDU, this means one of two things: either I will have to move someplace where a car isn’t so necessary (NYC, San Francisco, Boston, Montreal, etc), or I will have to bide my time here for at least a year in the hopes that the medication will stop my seizures. My money is on the former, but big moves are always hard to predict so I’m probably going to be in wait-and-see mode for awhile.

And how do I feel about this?

Well…I have my good moments and my bad ones. I’m not horribly depressed, but I’m definitely not enthused either. I’m glad that the limbo of medical evacuation is finished (it’s a rather opaque process), but the thought of going out and getting a part-time service job is just a bit more than my spirit can maintain right now. After almost a year of doing a job that really mattered, I don’t think I can go back to just paying the bills. Happily, once I have my DOS (Description of Service, a document that formally summarizes your service for prospective employers) in hand, there are lots of options out there; I genuinely hope that returning to such work might prove entirely unnecessary.

What does all of this mean for this blog?

Sadly, with my time in the Peace Corps being finished, this blog’s mandate and raison d’être is finished as well. I don’t have much patience with people who blog their daily lives, nor am I a big fan of the idea of adding yet another voice to the howling legions of political/economic/athletic/social blogs already out there. However, this isn’t quite the last post: at the moment, I’m writing a series of longer, more formal essays talking in part about my service, in part about my thoughts on development, and in part just about life. They should be coming out over the course of the next month or two according to the not-so-rigid timeframe of ‘as I feel like finishing them’. Check in for those, as I strongly feel that they will be the final necessary coda to my service, the analysis in which I sort out What It All Meant.