On Tuesday, my El Salvador group met for our last post-trip session. Although I had been looking forward to checking off another requirement for my M. Div. degree, it was a bittersweet moment. I felt a sense of sadness that I had not quite expected. As I have reflected on that over the last few days, I realized that part of the sadness was because I would not see some of these people again – particularly our group leader, John, and those who will be graduating in May. Together as a group we had witnessed some very powerful, emotional, horrifying, hopeful, “you name the adjective” sites that others who had not “been there” just cannot grasp. Yet my sadness runs much deeper than the bond I share with my group. I realized this morning that my sadness also stems from my own fear that I will simply “move on” from this experience. The trip transformed me in ways that I would have never imagined, but I am afraid that without intentional reminders like our post-trip sharing sessions, I will get wrapped up in “my own little world” and the people of El Salvador will become a distant memory. I cannot let that happen. Perhaps that is one of the reasons I started this blog. While I have written about things other than El Salvador here, this is a good place to share the stories of the people I met so that I don’t forget. Until next time, peace.
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You and I sure feel a lot the same way, and I, like you, am also concerned about just “moving on.” That is one reson that I wear my El Mozote bracelet 24/7. Everytime I look at my watch I am reminded of our experience and I really need that because I am afraid in my current state of mind I could very easily just slip back into old patterns of thought and let El Salvador be relegated to a distant memory, and that just isn’t satisfactory.
Thanks for your reflection and know that I am right along with you:)