Evelína: May article

22.05.2024 12:10 EZS Slovensko

Immerse yourself in Slovak culture & surround yourself with people who feel safe, give you energy and inspire you.

This month was quite transformative for me with many discoveries and reminders of what is actually important instead of blaming myself for doing this or that, feeling anxious, depressed or angry for the things that had happened before and wanting to avoid certain situations or people, because this month I could discover more about slovak culture, meet friends and learn new things about myself. It also made me acknowledge and miss even more people from my home country due to the sense of belonging and open-heartedness, which is easier to feel when you are surrounded by people who know you well and share the same cultural values. Being outside of my comfort zone also makes me feel extremely grateful for all the amazing people I am surrounded with and I could not ask for more open-minded and supportive friends than I have. This month also helped me to understand that not everyone around you will be the right person for you and you might not be the right person for them either, which is totally okay because you have completely different levels of perceptions, realities, likes or dislikes and as the saying goes – while something might feel good for one, it might feel bad for the other.  This month also reminded me that the things people say about you or you are saying about them is a reflection of their own or your inner world, which can go both in either a positive or a negative way, but if it still triggers, it just means that it's fully healed either.

 Unfortunately, I don’t remember how the month started. Therefore I will introduce you to my journey starting from the 9th of May, when I was slowly finishing my workshop about stress management, which I will hopefully present at the second leadership academy training and later at the high school. I do feel still a bit nervous about this topic, because of my perfectionist issues and because I do not feel acrideted to teach something to others nor do I see how others could benefit from listening to me. On this specific date, I also was quite lucky to find a completely English-speaking yoga studio in Bratislava and attend a full body-flow yoga class, which benefited me a lot, because not only did the teacher make adjustments to the yoga poses, but after the yoga session I felt a sense of relief from some of the emotions I had suppressed before, due to the sense of unsafety. After yoga, I walked around the district a bit and discovered new places, which I would like to visit in the future.

On the following day we with other volunteers helped to prepare the necessary tools for Mil’a pre mamu, which took place on Saturday. Therefore at the INEX office, we packed previously prepared badges and laminated some papers. On this day I also spontaneously decided to attend impro theatre hosted by funnylucious and I found out that the place was quite near the medical garden where the event would be located, which I found a bit funny due to coincidence. At the funnylucious, I happened to meet a girl who has been a volunteer at INEX before and she had extremely positive memories from her voluntary experiences both being a leader at the workcamp and a volunteer.

After my journey to the theater, it was time for Mil’a pre mamu, where I had to film a lot of videos and take pictures. It was a bit more tiring than I thought it would be, but I was not disliking it. At this event, I also got a chance to get a super quick makeup done and some gifts, which I appreciated. However, the thing which I enjoyed the most from this experience was working outdoors in nature.

On my days off, my former coursemate arrived in Bratislava because she wanted to revisit the city, upon her arrival we started our day by walking to the presidential palace gardens and looking at various styles of architecture. I also brought her to see the recent architecture projects located near the Nivy shopping centre, because I thought that it would be beneficial for her to see these projects since she is still studying in this field. On Monday we had the plan to visit two museums, but, unfortunately, I forgot that all of the museums are closed on this day in Bratislava, so we had to change the day plan and instead, we decided to visit the botanical garden, where we could admire various species of plants. I enjoyed the palm house the most, because of the species which do not grow in my home country. At times I feel quite amazed by the wonders which nature offers to us because its’ diversity is truly something magical and can make one feel like there is nothing impossible in this world. After the botanical garden, we went to share a pizza at an Italian restaurant, which made us both feel so sleepy that after a short walk, we decided to visit a cafe called Next Alpache, which by surprise was surrounded by books in English and you could just be there, have a cup of tea or coffee and enjoy reading a good book. Before saying goodbye to my friend we went to see the hotel called Butterfly House, which looked quite funky, but not in a bad way. These kinds of unique things make me wonder what kind of potential the human mind actually has and how come some have so many creative ideas yet we limit themselves, because of our fears and limiting beliefs, although maybe it is so, because we are so caught up in our minds that we simply do not allow ourselves to express the hearts desires. On Tuesday I continued to work on my workshop and after office hours I went to watch a hockey game with another Latvian girl, who wrote to me because one of her colleagues attended a language exchange event and there was someone who knew me from voluntary work. Later it turned out to be both of my flatmates. Anyhow, I sent an invitation to the house WhatsApp group to watch ice hockey and my flatmate Leo also decided to join, so we went to watch ice hockey – Latvia vs Kazakhstan.

Now I would like to bring attention back to the INEX office and the possibility of trying out my workshop with the people from the office, I did feel quite nervous at the beginning, but due to a bit of stomachache the previous night my nervousness faded away and I simply did not care at the moment while I was presenting if it would end up being bad or good. Anyhow, after the presentation of my workshop, I was pleasantly surprised by the positive way the people at the INEX gave me feedback about it and by surprise, I did not feel any harsh critique, which I have been used to receiving, but rather motivation for improving the workshop. Somewhere in the middle of working days I also attended the speed friending event hosted by funnylucious. I thought it would be something similar to what they had for the theatre, but it was not and there by chance I met a flatmate of mine. After the event, I realized that these kinds of socializing things are not my cup of tea, because for me it feels extremely draining to just have a small talk with no real connection. After this day I felt quite depressed and the weather was not helping, however catching up with my former coursemates via Whatsapp call later on lifted some heavy energy up and the next evening I finally decided to step outside of the flat and went to the museum nights which was happening here in Bratislava, because of our arrangement after the hockey game the Latvian girl also decided to join and said that she will bring two Italian friends with her, therefore I also invited my flatmate Leo, because I thought it would be good for him to connect with some Italians and possibly feel some more comfort while living abroad for the first time. After the museum night, I got invited to join and watch the hockey game at Tyršak, which I was not sure I would attend since I needed to have some alone time, but eventually, the universe has everything planned so that it perfectly aligns with the things in front of us. Eventually, I did take care of myself and got my time alone, which made me feel inspired to return to art, therefore I went to the shopping centre Aupark and bought art supplies for painting, and since it was very near Tyršak, the place where the hockey was being shown, I decided to go and watch the game, which was very intense, and unexpectedly Latvia won the game. There I also met Matuš, my flatmate's mentor, who is very kind and we caught up with how each of us was doing.

On the 20th of May, I was working from outside of the office and in the evening I had a small painting session with soft pastels, I am not sure how satisfied I am with the result due to the not fully aligned proportions, but I guess what is the most important is how you feel in the process while doing something, not the result.

Now, speaking of today, we had to clean the storage room at INEX, therefore we were sorting out a lot of boxes and cleaning up the tables. Although this month has not finished, my story for this month is slowly coming to an end, because soon I will fly to my home country Latvia to see my family, friends and my precious, sweet little dog. I do not know how I will feel coming back here though, because I do not feel comfortable right now due to personal reasons, but it does not change the fact that I do feel grateful for being able to explore another country and get to know the people from INEX, because I feel like the overall collective has a bright energy and all of them are very open-minded and supportive. I really love the idea of the project and that I can also help the other people in this project, and I also feel grateful that the project has brought me to a place, which I thought I would never end up in.


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