Written by CorpsAfrica/Malawi Volunteer Ms. Alinafe Chikombole
“It is the friends we make along the way that help us appreciate the journey!”
Going into my second month of volunteering I have learned to appreciate the social connections I have made this far. It can be hard to admit that you are feeling lonely away from what are your ordinary, family and friends. But what do you do? Well, I decided to make as many friends as possible. Therefore, I also have a lot more learning opportunities. While my old friends are always cheering me on and supporting me on the sidelines, it is not the same as having people in close proximity whom you share common interests with and being able to share some of the smallest details of your day with.
Undeniably, friendships are important; they give you a reason to smile yet again. In my case I find that my new friends have helped me to relieve stress when I felt like things were not going according to plan. They have made me laugh to tears even when I thought I could not laugh. They have also taken it upon themselves to make sure am well fed all day so that I do not complain about being hungry.
The early morning knocks have become a trend I look forward to. If and when I do not get a knock in the morning it worries me thinking what has happened to one of my friends. I take every chance I have to make a new friend. These are the people that make my experience even more worthwhile; they are not only my one-minute friends, but my friends for life. Friends for life because they have taught me some of the most valuable life lessons; going back into my normal I will carry with me some of these lessons.
Left right and center I have made connections amidst the community with diverse people of various age ranges, from old to young, my work mates and even people I meet just once in a while.
“Happiness is when you make unexpected new friends.”