Being only 22, I can definitely say that I have traveled a lot:29 countries are on my list. Moreover, I haven’t just traveled for sightseeing: I was living in 7 or 8 of them that definitely differs from being in the country for a couple of days for fun. I was having there normal “routine” life: going to work or to school, going for groceries, watching Netflix in the evening and once or twice per week was going out with some my friends. It wasn’t crazily fun all the time: it was real life. The more I was traveling, the more I was wondering why. The more I was wondering why the country, where I am from, differs a lot from most of the countries where I was living.
I feel sorry for Belarus. I feel sorry for the country with amazing people that are losing opportunities and living according to the standards they don’t deserve. My heart is hurting when I am coming to my native town and seeing people around me: people that have never seen the sea or have been only to Poland or Lithuania. I am feeling sorry for the people that are smart but stuck here in some jobs where there is no further development for them and money that they are getting is less than they actually deserve.
I am not originally from Belarus: my father is from Ukraine, my mom is from Poland. But I was born here. I am saying: I am Belarusian when somebody is asking me. I am not the best example of the patriot, I know it and don’t wanna be called like this. I am running away not to live in Belarus, but I don’t judge people who decided to stay. I am saying that I am ready to change my passport as fast as somebody will suggest me this. But it’s not because I am ashamed to be Belarusian: it’s because being Belarusian is closing a lot of doors for me. I have lost so many opportunities just to have a belarusian passport. Nevertheless, even when I will change it. if somebody will ask me, I will say: I am from Belarus and will continue correct everybody who will say to me: Oh, it’s white Russia?
I am all the time asking why? why are we living worse than others? Why is the country with such an amazing heritage now the one from where people escape?
Why do universities not provide facilities for studies? I was studying in two universities: in Lithuania and in Belarus. Vilnius university is not Harvard as well, but the difference was tremendous. In Belarus in most cases the professors were treating us as the lowest people in the world: you will better keep silence with your opinion if it differs from your teacher’s one. I will all the time be having in mind how one of the teachers made me cry at the exam because he was telling me for half an hour that I am stupid, I don’t deserve to be here, I am able only to stand in the kitchen and cook and he will let me pass only because he is feeling sorry for how dumb I am. He just didn’t like me even though I was one of the best students in the class. Yes, I am having 2-3 Belarusian professors that I am proud to call my teachers. But it’s exemption, not a rule, while in Lithuania nobody was calling me dumb. Nobody was telling me that I can’t. I was inspired to study, even that not everything was ideal. Even simple stuff as the Internet in the building: is it so difficult to provide? I am not talking about exchange programs: it’s so easy to do in Vilnius University while in Belarusian one you need to go through 7 circles of hell. And even if you go, you will be having problems afterward and probably will need to take an extra year.
I am feeling sorry for the people that are going to Lithuania or Poland to bring there cigarettes and alcohol. They are trying to earn some money but to see it is painful. How these usually old people are trying to hide a few extra packs of cigarettes just to earn a couple of euros. And then afterward trying to bring back some alcohol: also just to earn some extra money.
What’s wrong with our service? Why in the stores nobody will greet you and just will be looking at you like you are the greatest evil? I remembered how many times I was leaving the store only because the shop assistants were rude. And how many times I was smiling and saying “thank you” and was getting a look “are you crazy, girl” and no words ” you are welcome” in response.
I am hoping for the best. I am hoping that there are still people who are ready to change something. I am not ready to sacrifice my life and I have chosen not to change the system, but to choose another system. It is not right, but it’s my choice.
Hopefully, somebody will not be so selfish and make another one.