It’s the end of my first week in Sarajevo, so naturally it’s time to do what we budding therapists do best: reflect.
I arrived in Sarajevo late at night after a grueling flight full of crying babies and extensive circling in the air due to bad weather on the ground. Luckily, Sage was there to suffer with me, so the experience felt a little more manageable.
The first day was what you’d expect. We had a tour of the city, and we went to the tunnel people used to escape the city during siege. We went on to visit the Olympic bobsled track, Snipers Nest, and also the Jewish Cemetery. Visiting all of these places made it real for me. It’s sobering to stand in the places where so many innocent people lost their lives and to see the shelling marks on the side of the buildings. It’s also humbling to know that I am able to have a nice walk in the streets while others had to run for their lives down the same alleys.
What is most striking to me is the amount of cemeteries spread out through the main part of the city. It makes me wonder what types of places were taken out to make room for all the people to be buried. As I walk through the city I am amazed by the old buildings and the centuries of history leading up to now. My supervisor said something along the lines of “I’ve lived in two countries in my life – Bosnia before the war, and the place I live in now.” It makes me want to learn more about the time before the war, and in what ways people and culture have changed since then.
Fast forward a few days. I had my first day of internship at Wings of Hope. WoH is a community mental health organization that primarily works with women and children. My supervisors are great. I love the office space. I love the plant that I got for my desk. I will be doing some type of evaluation for the organization, but don’t quite have a clear direction of how to begin. More on that next time.
The city is lovely. It continues to grow on me every day. I’ve spent the past 10 months preparing for this adventure, and now that I’m here, I feel I have absolutely no idea what I’m doing. Causal.