Julia, Yalta / Kiev
My husband and I left Kyiv with two dogs a week before the war. My husband told me: "Julia, there will be a war, if we want to stay alive, we have to go." I just laughed and said he was stupid and pushing.
My name is Yulia, I’m 30 years old, and I can’t say exactly where I’m from anymore. The Russians took my house for the first time in 2014.
I was born and raised in Yalta, moved to Kyiv at the age of 17 when I entered the university. I still haven’t been able to work out the problem of the lost house, even with a psychologist. As soon as my psychologist asks about Crimea, I’m starting to cry. Now I’m writing this and roaring too.
My husband and I left Kyiv with two dogs a week before the war. My husband told me: “Julia, there will be a war, if we want to stay alive, we have to go.” I just laughed and said he was stupid and pushing. And then, when an aunt from the Crimea called a week before the incident and said that a military hospital was being deployed on the territory of their children’s (!) infectious diseases hospital in the middle of nowhere, I realized that this was not just an “exercise”.
I will never forget the morning of the 24th. Woke me up a call from a girl who helps us with cleaning in the salon. “Julia, I probably won’t come to you to clean up today, they’re shooting at us.” Before the war, we had everything: our own real estate, my husband had an IT business, in November I realized my long-term dream – I opened my grooming salon and a pet store. Now animals from a bombed shelter are being overexposed in my salon. A new life, for which no one prepared us.
The brain clings to some small absurd things. Why didn’t I take my favorite leather jacket with me? After all, I have been looking for her for so long, so special that “for all time”. Or what’s my 50 flower pots that I’ve been collecting so carefully for years. Wilted already, right? And will I ever see my three cats again, which I left with my employee, because “well, who will attack us, it’s nonsense, let’s rest for a week, and
I’m worried about my parents in Crimea. Dad is diabetic and mom with a removed thyroid gland. They need to take medications all the time, they are no longer in Crimea. No one is being released from Crimea. Neighbors of Tatars began to be taken for interrogations, they ask if there are familiar Ukrainians in Crimea, and I have parents with Ukrainian passports.
It’s a shame to communicate with those who stayed. I understand that it is a sin for us to complain, we are alive and well. But anxiety does not go away from this anywhere. What should we do next? Will we ever return home and will this house be there? Will I ever see my friends again? Colleagues? Your city? I used to love traveling so much, but traveling has no value when it’s a one-way trip.