my singular focus

I am anxious for our arrival, but nervous about what I might find in Ahmedabad. Poverty has long been a source of discomfort for me. I look forward to discussions on this trip about what it means to be poor and how poverty can effect the way we perceive others. My past experiences in the developing world have shown me that many people see poverty as scenery: that shanty town across the highway or a woman carrying water back to the village. When you think about poverty in this way, you inevitably lose sight of the underlying human experience. You are forgetting that there are people who must endure terribly poor conditions because they are unable to support their families in any other environment. I want to talk about why poverty can shape our perceptions in such a meaningful way. I want to talk about how we see those who are poor and whether our initial responses are justified. My feelings about poverty are the dominant force in my mental and emotional position right now. I believe they will play a serious role in my experience on Niswarth.

I am leaving behind the worries of high school. I will not think about college or grades while in India. Separation from these anxieties will allow me to focus solely on my new experiences and thoughts. I can then develop these ideas in a mental space that is not obstructed by outside concerns. Niswarth will be my singular focus. 

I am also leaving behind my friends both physically and mentally. Physically, I am now thousands of miles from home. I will not be able to see my peers until we return the United States one month from now. I am also becoming mentally separate from my friends. Rather than spend these next three weeks thinking about what other people might be doing, I will fully commit myself what is happening in that moment. I will build new experiences with my peers on this story. They will be my new source of inspiration as I temporarily release past experience and people.