"What war? What do you mean war? No way!"

Anastasia is 31 years old. She is from the Samara region. She is a copywriter and does SMM. In her letter she talks about how difficult it is to go through news about the war and pictures from Ukraine. The war affected her whole life, despite the fact that she is surrounded for the most part by like-minded people, the oppressive feeling does not disappear. That is why Anastasia tries to rejoice in the little things.

- Right now I'm trying to hang in there. Keep my conscience, my empathy, my humanity. I keep myself from hating. Hell, I even try to enjoy the little things I have without feeling guilty. A rescued cat, a delicious dinner, nice weather, an interesting movie or book, a walk with a friend. Ordinary little things in life.

It wasn't easy for me, but pushing myself into despair won't stop the war, and it won't make any soul feel better. If we had no right to feel joy because others feel bad, no one on the planet would ever smile.

I believe the war will be over. And by that point, I think it's important for all of us to stay alive and remain human . Take care of yourselves. And from hatred, too.

On February 24, I turned on the computer and found out about everything. My first reaction was surprise: "What war? What do you mean war? No way!"

On the same day I came down with covid and lay in bed for two days. I thought a lot, worried a lot, got myself all worked up, and slept badly. On the third day, I got up and turned on the computer again: full-fledged news about the bombings, victims, photos, and videos were pouring in from YouTube.

I have no friends in Ukraine, but it doesn't matter. When you see a mother and father and their child lying dead in the street, does it matter whether you knew them or not, whether it's in your country or not? It's a tragedy either way.

From that day on, I slept even worse. Every day I greedily rushed to the computer and read and watched everything I could find. Horrified. I cried. The guilt was overwhelming. I didn't find out the official version on purpose, but my mother was watching TV in the next room, so I could hear hers, too. 

It's a strange feeling to hear one thing from YouTube and the opposite from TV. But TV, of course, I haven't believed in for a long time, and I haven't watched it in about 10-12 years.

I must be lucky becauseall my friends share my position on the war . We were afraid to talk about it on VK and whispered on Telegram. But even so, I think each of us felt incredibly alone in front of this killing machine that none of us can stop .

Guilt came with every news of the bombing. The helplessness was driving me into despair. Especially against the background of the various news reports and videos about how opponents of the war were being treated in Russia. I went to a couple of rallies in my town, too. Fortunately, I got home safely, but it was very scary.

After February 24, I found out how many Ukrainians there were among those whose channels I subscribed to on YouTube . Before February, they were singing songs in Russian, doing reviews of computer games, sewing historical costumes, and talking about them in interesting ways. And after February 24, everything changed. At best they deleted content in Russian, and at worst they posted videos about how they hated Russians.

I wanted to shout, "Those to whom you say that, they didn't do it! On the contrary, we are your subscribers, we support you!" Forgive the analogy, but it was reminiscent of the situation in uni, when half the class skipped classes, but scolded for it those who came. Because who else to scold, the same are not. Here, too, they poured their hatred on those they could reach. At first I even tried to write comments, to explain, to sympathize with the grief of the Ukrainians, but in response I received hate. I don't write comments anymore and I try not to read them. This war has poisoned many people with hatred, and hatred won't go away so easily.

I felt like I was between a hammer and anvil in that situation - enemies to one side, traitors to the other, and the whole world hates us.

After a few months, I could no longer watch the news with as much detail as before. I could hear explosions in every firecracker in the street and fireworks. The peaceful park before my eyes seemed to have burned to the ground. And I wasn't even in Ukraine, just watching the news. Probably, if I had continued, I would have had a mental breakdown. So now I also follow the news, but, excuse me, I skip shots of bombing. Not because I don't care, but because I can't anymore.

My mother and I talked a little bit about the war. She hates Putin, but she also hates Zelensky, considers him a puppet of the West, and scolds Biden. Of course, she watches a lot of TV, and that's all she repeats. You can drive a lot of people crazy with such mantra every day. But we didn't fight with my mom. We understand that we have different thoughts, but our love for each other is higher than that.

I don't know what influenced it more: our conversations or the further situation in Russia. But over time my mom's attitude has shifted from "We don't know what really happened there" to "Putin, ***, why did he help?!" I consider this to be progress.

Of course, life has changed now. First of all I felt it emotionally. There's a very oppressive feeling from this whole situation, which, of course, affects everything you do, takes away your strength. In the first couple of months it was very nervous, even at work and in communication, although our position on the war was the same. Disappeared services and products that you used to buy in everyday life. For example, we no longer sell Nesquik cocoa, which I adored and drank since childhood. Well, and connecting to some services only through dancing with a tambourine, and sometimes that does not work. In general, such little things.

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