I ask myself that question very often. I've been in this country now a few months and it took a lot of work to get here. I "heavily" volunteered to come here; I know this is something I had to do for my career and myself. Luckily for me I ended up in a totally different area that I was supposed to and I work closely with Mr. Encore, I could not have been more blessed.
The downside to this wonderful opportunity is that my life is confined to a very small compound; it was hard the first few weeks. It only took me a few minutes to walk from where I sleep to where I work (and they are at opposite ends). Lately though, time has been ticking and when I walk that path to my living quarters I wonder how can I keep going? How can one do the same, day after day, away from your family and friends, away from my "life" back in the states? I wonder...what keeps me going? I have no kids, pets or plants back home, no human or living being depends on me.
I have my parents, siblings and Mr. Encore's family to provide support and encouragement, but they are very far, they do not depend on me. If I had kids I knew I would be doing it for them, but I don't. I'm not sure where I keep getting the fuel that keeps me going, all I know, is that I do. I wake up every morning, go to work, maybe fit in a workout during the day, I go eat but always go back to work. Some nights I've been at the office over 12 hours, once I get "home" I just do the same, take a shower, check emails and go to bed.
The upside is that the days start to run into each other and by the time you really pay attention at the date, another week has gone by. Most of us count down our time by the weeks or months and I haven't been here long enough to even start counting down. Some people say this feels like prison (most are civilians) but I disagree, prisons don't have wonderful cafeterias with an "all you can eat" menu, or wonderful gyms with indoor pools, even beauty shops where we can get manicures, pedicures and facials.
This is a period of our lives where we are stripped of all the "stuff" we own to include our civilian clothing, our families and friends and our regular lives. We give all that up for the mission, whether we agree or disagree with the politics. This is all about given someone else a better future even if it may never look like our own but in their world this is a free as one can be. I think that is what keeps me going.
What about you? What keeps you going?