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The year of Russia’s full-scale war in Ukraine shocked the world and changed each of those living in Ukraine and many others outside of it. We stand in solidarity with the people of Ukraine and remain hopeful that peace can be restored in the nearest future. Continue reading to learn the thoughts and insights of our Group Marketing Director, Kateryna Novoselova, who took a trip back to Ukraine this January.

Tickets for the end of January are booked. I look at the saved links explaining what needs to be done in case of shelling, explosion, or nuclear attack. I’m going to Ukraine. The promise to return “as one piece” seems slightly reckless, but I have no moral doubt about the rightfulness of my decision to take this trip. I want to see my father, who volunteered to defend our country, and my grandmother, who decided to stay in Ukraine because it is her home.

In my case a gap between theory and practice took two days. I heard the first rocket explosion in the middle of the night in my city Zaporizhzhia. When you wake up from a blast, the body should come out of deep sleep in a nanosecond – this requires a powerful cocktail of cortisol and adrenaline. Perhaps, in case of cardiac arrest, such an adrenaline dose is injected into the heart – it jumps out of the chest, even if you had heard explosions while awake.

The next day air raid sirens howl approximately every 3 hours, warning that someone there has made another dreadful decision, one which will entail hundreds of crippled destinies. I look at people’s faces and don’t see any fear. On the contrary, I see cohesion. The war united a wide variety of people in one threat and one resistance. Fear seems like an ancient artefact now. 

Most of what society fears is not worth the fear: exams, conviction, being wrong, starting a business, moving, changing professions, having a child, aging and even fear itself. But many things we are not afraid of are worth it: to be dishonest and mean, to become desensitized, not to believe in anything, and becoming a person who does not admit to mistakes or failure.

After observing this war and the behavior of Ukraine as a nation, I will never read another motivational book, because nothing will compare to this lesson. Ukrainians showed the true meaning of these words: “Do not give up and be persistent”. And you can also read the report of the Royal United Services Institute for Defense and Security Studies of Great Britain link here to understand what Ukrainians faced, from the leadership to simple volunteers, in the first days when the world silently watched the invasion and Ukraine lacked everything from shells to troops in the right places. This is perseverance.

The end of the war is still far away. The danger has not passed, every Ukrainian can die, that’s why support of every person matters. The Russian regime will still spray explosive poison until the last breath – doomed animals become aggressive before they die, but the main fracture has undoubtedly occurred. Previously, I wanted many things in life. But now I want only one thing, everything I wanted before turned out to be completely optional.

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