Working in my dream institution involves many ups and downs. When it is mostly the downsides, I try to recall how hard I pray to God to be able to live this reality.
It is almost a year working here. One by one, my lunch mates are departing to other agencies, moving back to their country, or pursuing a higher position as far as Cote D’ivoir. Today it hits me, what will happen to me when it’s my turn to leave? Looking back, I have been taking things for granted. In this office, the enabling environment is very supportive. When I had hard time transitioning from my university years, I got many colleagues who look after me and shared about what should be done in that particular situation. I find that knowledge is very abundant here, and I got all the privilege to learn it first hand with the experts.
But what I would miss the most, is the way everyone treats each other equally and respectfully.
In my life, I have fallen in and out of love with idealism. I thought to myself — there is no such thing as perfect combination of having a job in a great institution and a benevolent cause to work for, subsequently with having supporting colleagues with an enabling environment to grow professionally and personally. To be respected when you go to government office because you come from the UN. To have people forgotten your age and see you eye to eye. I will definitely miss doing advocacy work.
I might not know what it is like out there.
But I find what I dreamt of during my college years here.
And it is very sickening to ponder on the thought that this is not permanent.
that by the time I left this place, I will be replaced by someone. That nothing is permanent, and I am replaceable. this might be one of the hardest thing I should understand growing up as an adult. That we were not born special — unless you work hard enough to be one.
I remember one of my colleague said,
“Please don’t perceive this place as the only path for you to grow professionally. instead, go out and explore what is it like out there. Whether you would still prefer to work for children as your calling, or you would like to shift to another path, no such thing as too late. You’ve got all the time to explore,”
I hope when it is time for me to leave, I would have a spacious heart to embrace all the lessons and get excited with what will come ahead of me.