Some of the Baha’is I met in the Czech Republic are wanderers. They spend their lives living in various countries, serving the faith. It reminds me that when I was young I thought I wouldn’t be living in Canada, but instead I would travel from one place to another, working and living around the globe. However, I feel attached to my family and friends, to the mental health community and the Baha’i community here in Halifax, and to the Canadian medical system. I am especially well-served by Nova Scotia Family Pharmacare, without which I wouldn’t be able to afford the medications that keep me stable.

Still, perhaps there are some small changes I can make to preserve my feeling of newness. I have the idea of doing some new kind of volunteer work in mental health and also within the Baha’i community. I want to finish my novel, and redefine my life as a writer. I have discovered that writing novels doesn’t come naturally or easily to me and that I don’t need to totally discard the writing that does. I enjoy my non-fiction work, personal essays and poetry. I need to keep writing but my writing goals have changed.

I also want to keep walking. My time in Prague proved to me that I can walk through pain if need be, and my hope is that if I keep working on my physical health that one day I will be pain free. I admit that in the Frankfurt Airport, after being sent from one end of the terminal to the other and back again, I nearly broke down because of the pain in my legs, and asked to be taken by motorized cart to my next destination. It wasn’t a hard decision for me to admit my inability to continue without help, and I even allowed myself to be wheelchaired from the gate to baggage and through security at the Toronto airport.  It made a huge difference to the quality of my experience and saved me from having a meltdown.

So now I know I am not too proud to ask for help. And despite my misgivings, it’s nice to be home, where help is always just a phone call away and where my family and friends have been waiting for me. Castles and cobblestones are nice but you can’t beat community for comfort and joy.