Monday, September 27, 2010

Heart Strings

Have you ever had something in your life... a passion... a dream perhaps... something that you have always had in the back of your mind 
"Someday I'd like to do that." 
"Someday I want to go here."
Well for me that something is Afghanistan. Ever since 2003 I have had this indescribable passion and desire to go to Afghanistan. Afghanistan is the reason I became a nurse. Afghanistan is the one place that will bring up intense emotions of fear, excitement, hope, sadness and passion in me.
I go through phases with this dream of mine. Phases of wanting to drop everything I have and heading over to central Asia and work in some clinic there as a nurse. Oh what a dream that would be. My most recent "Oh my gosh I'm going to pick up and move to Afghanistan." moment was when I read the book, Three Cups of Tea I fell so in love with the story of Greg Mortenson building schools in Central Asia that I couldn't think of anything else for an entire summer. As a matter of fact... that fall I drove up to San Fransisco to meet Greg Mortenson and it was one of the most exciting moments of my life. That man is truly one of my hero's.

                        Then there are days where I realize the danger and the sacrifice in it all..... and I want to do nothing but stay here with my nice secure job and happy home.... where I'm not afraid of being killed, kidnapped or captured daily.                   

 These photos are pictures of me in a burqa (the top one is just a head covering). The blue burqa I actually own and the white one was the first one I ever tried on... I cried the first time I tried on a burqa. I also wore it for an entire day during a training program I was in. Our teacher asked us to dress in "Muslim attire"  and I chose the burqa. I was ignored the entire day by my classmates. Only one person said, "Hello Andi!" and smiled. I could tell that people were terrified of me... even though they knew who was underneath.
The teacher we had that day noticed how isolated I was and asked me to sit next to him during lecture. We instantly became friends. He is a mentor of mine now and we still talk to this day.


I really don't know if or when I will end up in Afghanistan someday but I am hopeful that there is a reason for my odd and strange passion for this country. 

What about you? I want to hear about a dream or passion of yours! 



  1. My favorite book is "A Thousand Splendid Suns" by Khaled Houseeni (sorry misspelled the author's name :( It describes the life of several women in Afghanistan. USSR, where I grew up, was at war with Afghanistan and we had a lot of poor people from there on the streets of Moscow and there were a ton of refuge camps for women and children. A lot of bombings in Moscow and bomb threats in my school. I guess coming from that side of it, I give you a lot of credit for being a white American and wanting to go there, let alone putting on a burqa. I hope you won't be disheartened and disappointed if you do go by what you see. It's a scary place, but there are nice people as anywhere, of course. By the way, there is nothing wrong with having a passion. Everyone deserves to have one and you shouldn't have to explain it to anyone. Good luck to you with your goals. :)

  2. My photo of myself and that handsome man is one of my very favorites! He is my hero as well~
    My dream ever since I became serious about photography is India and, (little secret that no one knows yet...) - I AM GOING IN NOVEMBER! I will be there to celebrate my birthday and while I am a wee bit nervous, I am also over the top excited!
    Thanks for stopping by today!

  3. Kimberly how exciting!! I cant wait to hear the stories and see the photos from that trip!

  4. Oh man. Even the idea of Afganistan scares me. Makes me cry every time I hear stories, but would terrify me to go. Good on ya.

    Someday I'd like to: Work in public health. Help people. Really help people.
    Someday I'd like to go: Everywhere. I want to go so many places I can't even list. Right now I'd love to go to Ireland.


  5. Britt Ireland is at the top of my list! As a matter of fact I will be going there this coming spring to visit two of my friends who just moved there!!

  6. Wow Andi, that would definitely have to be a special calling! But life is wonderful in that way, some of us are ARE called and given a passion and peace about going to a place like Afganistan. And if you're supposed to go there one day you will!

    Thank you for your encouraging words btw!