Cameroon / Peace Corps / Volunteering


Know that you are making a difference, even if you yourself will never see it. -Advice of one teacher to another

Bukowski once said, “You don’t choose writing. It chooses you.” At the same time, when it chooses you, you can decide to take on completely what has captivbated you, or you could make the choice to release it some other way, or to just take it with you until you forget and the inspiration fades away. I don’t want the inspiration to fade out, but there times that I block myself from writing…because it feels selfish, because it’s all for me. And I am here to benefit others; I am not here to indulge in myself. Writing is my chance to live twice the wonderful memories, or to vent, or to boost myself up because of some experience I chose to focus in on. I battle with myself and the writings that have chosen me.

But this weekend was the weekend of consumption. Every delicious meal had to go to my belly. Pizza. Cheeseburgers. Milkshakes. Ice cream. My greedy self came out from wherever it was hiding, and I have resulted in a surplus of pleasures that I don’t think I really needed. And I’ve probably also gained 10 pounds. It was a repeat of the feelings I had when I was about to leave the states, trying to take in everything that I would not have the chance to and might regret not doing later. For the memories of having done these things.

But now it’s back to the routine I was trying to establish. Maybe that’s why they want me to stay at post the first three months. What I start doing now for the next 20 months or so. 100 sit ups each morning before breakfast and lesson planning in advance. Conserving my chocolates and cheese until I feel desperate for them! And writing. Writing for my sister. Writing out those little stories that could mean a little part to someone else as they do to me. Writing for Cameroonians and for the Americans that could learn something from them, good and bad.

I guess it starts with me.

About Tara

Tara received her degree in French and Communications before jetting off to serve Cameroon for 2 years with the Peace Corps. She has forever since been inspired to serve in humanitarian projects around the world. She's a writer, tour guide, business owner, property manager, wifey, dog mom, and traveler. Tara lives in Dallas, Texas, where she's happily married to the tech genius who keeps her website pretty.

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