March 8 and Open Hearts Space
“We are mostly ladies, women, teenagers, and girls. We have many different names. We bring all sorts of stories that belong only to ourselves.” On the occasion of International Women’s Day, Antonina Stasiuk, Project Manager of the Open Hearts Space wrote about the diversity that lies within the community.
At this point our project, Open Hearts Space, is mainly about women.
We are mostly ladies, women, teenagers, and girls.
We have many different names.
We bring all sorts of stories that belong only to ourselves.
We are old, or we think that we are already old. We are young, or we feel too young for “all this”.
We are students, we are retirees, and pupils.
We are tailors, teachers and athletes.
We are artists, doctors, cleaners and bartenders.
Caregivers, engineers, translators and cooks.
Many of us are still looking for our own place in life.
We are unemployed, we are looking for a job, or we just feel relieved because we finally managed to find one.
We are religious, or we are not religious at all.
We learn German, go to courses, exchange tips regarding studying.
We complain about the language, try to laugh it all off, this way giving each other encouragement.
We struggle with decisions regarding choosing a middle school, we struggle with another decision that someone made for us.
We struggle, we ask to be heard, we hug each other for hello, for good bye, and also when we simply need it.
We miss family that is far away.
Some of us are lucky to have them quite close and to be able to visit them whenever we want.
We are migrants, refugees, some of us are from here, from around the corner.
We are mothers, we would like to become one or some of us never ever.
We have husbands, fiancées, we are lesbians, we have girlfriends, or we live alone and sometimes we feel good about it and sometimes bad.
We want to be here, we want to go back, whatever this “back” might mean.
We want to be in between.
We get sick, we get well.
We come around.
Sometimes cheerful and laughing, sometimes tired, anxious and only half-present.
Sometimes we sit and chat merrily with others, sometimes we sit somewhere nearby and
choose silence and solitude.
Sometimes we disappear.
We stop showing up. Because of something, because of work, because of life.
And then we come back. Or not.
We do not always come back.
As one of us once said:
“Open Hearts Space is a safe harbor. Sometimes we stop in it for longer, sometimes for
shorter. Each of us as much as we need”.
Project Manager, Open Hearts Space