all shot up and ready to go

Photo by Chhor Sokunthea World Bank.jpgIt’s looking increasingly definite that my contract, and thus my health insurance, will end on December 31. So before going on vacation I made about eight doctor’s appointments, all for the last three weeks of the year, to get my medical ducks in a row before losing my benefits / leaving for Senegal.

February 15, 2016 is just shy of two years from the day I promised myself to do a French language sabbatical in Senegal within two years, so I’ve set that as my target departure date. But there’s nothing forcing me to go then – I don’t have my plane ticket yet, I still haven’t signed up for the immersion program, there’s no job waiting for me there afterwards. At times, I harbor doubts about my ability to step out into a much more nebulous unknown than ever before. I wonder if I’ll actually go through the motions of booking the ticket, scheduling the classes, pitching myself to the people who could give me work in West Africa.

But I realized this afternoon as my needle-phobic self walked back to work from the latest doctor: there’s nothing like paying $340 and rolling five band-aids deep after three travel-related vaccinations and two blood draws in 24 hours, to redouble your commitment to the thing that necessitated all that anxiety and expense.

As I rubbed my sore arms and staunched the irrational fear that my throat would close up from an allergic reaction to the typhoid, meningitis or polio inoculations, I also smiled gleefully with the knowledge that I’d be damned if I let the never-ending-needles ordeal go to waste. Today was one more baby push out the door to go abroad.

And on that happy note, have a lovely weekend!

[Photo: Chhor Sokunthea / World Bank]

2 thoughts on “all shot up and ready to go

  1. FWIW I hope you can go. You know, if it’s terrible, you can always come home. That pre-excuse always helps get me in the door. “I’ll try it and if it’s terrible, I’ll leave.” For me, the hardest is starting the actual thing.

    Do you know Khady, aka La Polyglotte? She blogs at She is Parisian of Senegalese roots. She’s a language-lover. Talk to her and she will help keep you motivated!

    • I’m pretty much 100% going to go, but I’m superstitious/have too much pride to take it for granted, just in case something goes awry. Hadn’t heard of Khady, will check her out. Thanks for the recommendation!

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