my week at no more deaths. it's very difficult to truly explain how i experienced arivaca and the sonoran desert.
living at the camp made me experience two very different emotions. on one hand, i experienced an emotional high from the community that welcomed and embraced me everyday. every single volunteer at the camp surprised me with their wisdom and knowledge. Everyone was so sensitive, caring , and compassionate. i felt like if we could all see the desert then we could all love each other again. the second emotion was of intense grief, i don't understand and still don't understand why i get these rights, and freedoms, and privileges but someone else doesn't. i don't have to cross a desert for a small chance. i will never been tortured in a parasite infested wash. i will never leave my two daughters.
i know the blog that i am writing right now doesn't seem to make much sense nor is it very concrete and directed but it is simply impossible for me to recount all of my experiences there.
i met a man who came back to Mexico to visit his dying grandmother. he has two children, two daughters, one is 2 and the other is 4. he has a wife and a home in Colorado. we met him on the side of the road. he waited for a car that would never come. he touched my life and i felt so connected to him. but we were so separated because i have the privilege to travel as i like. i have the freedom to not be hidden but he doesn't have that right. he is waiting for a car that will never come. i am in a car that is simply passing by. i am simply passing by. maybe our eyes well meet and in those moments maybe my humanity is truly bound to his.
i think i have to write my 2 weeks at the desert in conjunction to my week back in tucson. noel asked me today if i felt "civilization" was foreign, or rather if i felt strange to be "back in civilization." the truth is that i do. i truly feel estranged to this place. rachel mentioned that my life is sorta defined by conflicting statements. the truth is that i can't make up my mind. being back in civilization makes me face who i was before the camp, creates a confrontation between myself. i am so confused. what should i do with my life. how do i live ethically? how can i come back to the desert next year? then i think about my classes, and new boots, and a dress that is lost in the mail. i want to feel connected but i am so disconnected. sometimes 'i get it' other times i want to forget about it.
life is pretty simple for me as a duke student. i am incredibly happy to be where i am. i live without consequence and often without concern. i do what makes me happy, what makes my family and friends happy. i watch tv, i check my email, and i read books. but being here, being in tucson, living with consequence and with concern is so foreign to me. i don't know whether to run away or to embrace this new change. life was simple but now it's not. it will never be as simple as it had been.
it's no longer a question of not knowing but rather not doing. what if i realize and acknowledge this conflicted situation and what if i walk away? how will i live with myself like that? how can i ever go back to my simple duke life? what if i never want to! what if i do want to? what if i'm ashamed and torn either way? what do i do now?