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Anna Fedotova

War Diary: "We are so tired that we are no longer afraid of shelling"

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July 20, 2014, Petrivske

The WAR came to my house, not the ATO, as we call it, but the WAR!!!

All night we have attacks! They hit all the time! Fear! Confusion! Uncertainty! Horror!

August 3, 2014, Petrivske

We hide in basements, we hide children, we can't even leave – attacks don't stop day or night. A neighbor was killed, he was scattered all over the garden. Horror...

War Diary:

August 10, 2014, Petrivske

 Shells fall right along the houses, it seems to me, and in our garden, too. I can't, and I don't want to watch. We sit in the basement. The children are scared, and I am trembling with fear for myself and my family.

August 12, 2014, Petrivske

A slight lull, we decided to explore the yard. That's horrible. There are two unexploded shells in the garden. Now it became even more terrible for life. Everything is cut by splinters – two buckets were collected in the yard.

August 19, 2014, Petrivske

Attacks! Attacks! Attacks! "Grads" almost do not stop, some new technique is working, something even heavier than "Grads".

August 25, 2014, Petrivske

I go for food to the market, children need to be fed. What is happening around us is beyond words. War has come to every home.

Thoughts creep in that it's time to leave, it doesn't get better. Every night there are attacks and hits. Do we have the guarantee that the next shell will not fly into my house or basement?

August 26, 2014, Petrivske

A shelling hit the school – no windows, no roof, one wing is burned out. This is terrible.

Another neighbor died. Tomorrow they will bury him... in the GARDEN! People are afraid to go to the cemetery, and people are not allowed to do it – there are military activities nearby.

The water supply has been interrupted, but the electricity is still on, thank God.

We live with children in the basement, I almost never go into the house, the attacks are so heavy that you can not have time to hide.

August 27, 2014, Petrivske

It hit us - the roof is not subject to repair, we need to change it. The main thing is do it before winter, and we want all this to be over. But there is no end, and hope for peace is fading.

August 28, 2014, Petrivske

Ilovaisk is under fire! Fire after fire! And we are attacked, too... We must run! We must save ourselves and our children!

It's a pity to leave the house, it will be robbed, there are people like that, but life is more important.

1 September is near, and we even did not buy copybooks, because we don’t even think about school. It is necessary to survive.

August 30, 2014, Petrivske

God, how awful it is!!! What "green corridor" can we talk about!? It is bombed, and the walls shake!!! We have learned to distinguish when it flies from our part and when it comes to us.

There's a body hanging on a pole, for God's sake, it's just a boy! He is hanging on the wires! This is the last straw! We will try to get to Mariupol, otherwise we don't know how it will all end.

I'm going to collect things, pills, bandages. God, how can I, an invalid with an open bowel, live and wander?

We are going into the unknown.

War Diary:

September 1, 2014, on the road

It is calm. Children have to go to school, and we just run away, leave the house, all the money, the household. It's scary, the gates are open all over the street, everyone is in a hurry to load everything they can take away, children - and cars are driving away in different directions.

Did we think that we would have to live with the war, and even more so that my children would have to live with it?

We are going into the unknown. Who is waiting for us where? Who needs us? How many of us are there? Many questions, no answer yet...

September 2, 2014, Mariupol

City. It is quiet. No explosions are heard. It's crowded, apparently, there are a lot of people like us. People's faces look confused and hopeless. We rented a flat with difficulty, prices are pretty high. If nothing changes, the money will be enough for 2-3 weeks, but we will hope for the best.

October 15, 2014, return

The situation does not change, except that we have less and less money. It is difficult for my husband to work. Whether we wanted to or not, life forces us to go back.

October 16, 2014, Petrivske

Home, sweet home... Chaos, mess, ruin. It is difficult to reconstruct the situation that happened here in my absence.


November 4, 2014, Petrivske

I know we can't live here. My husband's business was closed, there were some people with weapons around, in stores, in the market, near the kindergarten and school. Curfew, we live like outcasts. There are no payments, the Petrivske has been frozen.

December 3, 2014, Petrivske

We finally decide to leave. Where to? Probably closer to home, but to the place where there is Ukrainian government and the legislative state. We are not needed anywhere, so we need to find a place, where we will be able to financially survive.

December 20, 2014, Novotroitske

Posts, trenches, more posts. People with machine guns... Tanks, equipment, a lot of equipment, more posts...

Ukrainian flag. Novotroitske. We look at the house that we found on the Internet. We rent the first apartment that we looked at. Our new home is someone else's, temporary, but home.

I have two bags with me; one of the children's things and some of our own, in the other there are four cups, four plates, spoons, a knife, a frying pan and a saucepan. That's all we have. We have money for one month.

December 31, 2014, Novotroitske

The first New Year without a Christmas tree, in someone else's house, with a certificate of IDP (internally displaced person) enclosed in the passport. Behind there are 10 days of ordeal from office to office. Collection of certificates and other certificates confirming the first certificates.

Here there are shootings. too, but there is no point in running any further, and there is nowhere to go. Because of what happened all the sores have worsened, there is nothing to go to the hospital with. The youngest daughter has eczema of the hands and feet on a nervous basis. The eldest-lost vision to 0.1 and 0.2 in both eyes! There is no money to buy her even slightly normal glasses. Again, we save money on food so that the child can at least see something.

Did I think that I would give my child EYEGLASSES for the New Year! This is not the kind of gift children dream of when they are 12 years old.

One hope is that I will soon get at least some money, here, after all, at least I should receive my pension and minimum income. But when? There are many people like me. Everyone complains and cries, but we are alive, and this is the main thing.

March 6, 2015, Novotroitske

Life goes on hard, without money, almost in poverty, but it goes on. Children go to school, friends appeared.

There are still shootings, almost every night, and sometimes during the day you can hear cannonades.

June 10, 2015, Novotroitske

Holidays, but there is no joy, we can not afford the sea, the forest, or rest. All funds are spent to survive somehow – neither to dress, nor to buy shoes, nor to undergo any treatment or just to buy the necessary medicines or dressings [materials]. Just SURVIVE!!!

July 20, 2015, Novotroitske

Summer is in full swing, and we have a WAR! War, with all the circumstances that follow from this word. The financial situation does not change, life is difficult, and there is no confidence in the future.

Recently, we received humanitarian aid from Rinat Akhmetov – the mobile team of the "AID" Foundation arrived. Now at least it is a little easier: we understand that somehow we can make ends meet and not think where to find money to buy macaroni or porridge to live until pension payment.

Thanks that at least someone did not leave us and is trying to let us survive in this situation.

War Diary:

August 10, 2015, Novotroitske

Summer is almost over, and we still live in uncertainty, fear for our lives, the lives of our children and loved ones.

September 16, 2015, Novotroitske

The children went to school, we somehow gathered them and bought everything necessary for classes, but if there was no help from the "AID" Fund, what we would eat, I do not know.

My pension is not enough even for a pharmacy and food, even just the most necessary things. Candies in the house is a mark of a holiday.

October 27, 2015, Novotroitske

It's my birthday! The first birthday in Novotroitske, the first birthday without relatives, friends and relatives.

Children drew postcards, it warms the soul.

February 2, 2016, Novotroitske

When will this war end? Let it be ATO, whatever it is called, we just want to live as before, in peace, at home, not to be an outcast in our country, not to run from one authority to another, trying to prove that I am a person, a citizen of my country, the same as everyone else, only still living in someone else's house and starting life from scratch through no fault mine.

April 15, 2016, Novotroitske

Spring has come, the sun is beginning to warm, the grass is green, ther are leaves and flowers. Life goes on...It may not be the way we wanted, but time is moving forward, making its own adjustments in our lives.

All hope of returning home had vanished with the snow. I understand that there is no way back, at least not yet, or rather I hope, I still hope that for now.

12 June 2016, Novotroitske

How quickly time flies! On the one hand, the school year has flown by, and children are growing up. On the other hand, it seems that this war lasts forever.

25 August 2016, Novotroitske

Back to school for the kids... There is no hope that they will go to school at home again. I understand that I am more at home in this strange apartment than in my childhood home.

December 3, 2016, Novotroitske

Winter. In stores and on the market there are tangerines. For me, since childhood, the smell of tangerines is the smell of the NewYyear, something bright and kind, something associated with warmth and comfort, something clean and fabulous...

But, alas, the years of war have changed us. Now we are not thinking about how to buy a Christmas tree and treat our relatives and friends with something delicious, but how to survive, how to simply feed the family, so that there is enough from pension to pension in the amount of 1300. How to make it so that there is still enough for the pharmacy, and it would not hurt to have a tutor for the girls. I understand that this is unrealistic, but somehow we survive...

Thanks to the "AID" Foundation, at least someone helps us not to die of starvation.

February 5, 2017, Novotroitske

Again a change of housing, again a new house, all over again: cleaning, a new owner with own rules, things from place to place, re-registration of the IDP certificate at a new address. Again, a lot of offices and instances, some kind of closed circle, you run like a squirrel in a wheel, and where you run and why – you do not really understand.

War Diary:

March 7, 2017, Novotroitske

Spring, March 8 is like a holiday, but I am in no festive mood.

We are so tired and so used to war that we no longer talk and are not afraid of attacks, we are not afraid of military equipment in any places and quantities. When we hear the cannonade, we don't run to the basement, but just put the windows on the airing, so that they don't suddenly shatter. We perceive everything related to the war as the current moments of our life. And this makes us feel bitter, afraid for ourselves and the fate of our children.

April 15, 2017, Novotroitske

The youngest daughter's birthday! My God, she's 12 years old, but she thinks like a grown-up, battered woman.

This war took away our home, prosperity and confidence in the future, work, the opportunity to be treated and maintain their health, and it took from the children – the most bright and what will never return – childhood.

None of us know what will happen tomorrow. We are afraid to make plans for the future, but we still live, we try to enjoy the slightest changes for the better, we try not to lose hope for the speedy end of the war, for a normal life in OUR home. We hope, however hard it may be, that things will get better for us some day. The question is: when?

June 20, 2017, Novotroitske

Summer, it is warm, I want the sea and sun, unfortunately, it is impossible yet. This eternal lack of money. Thanks to the Fund "AID" that does not forget us, at least it is a little easier to live.

It's a shame that the war doesn't end. It is terrible that those in power do not hear us; it is painful that our country does not need us. We see help only from Rinat Leonidovych Akhmetov, not from those who started this war and support it.

War Diary:

June 30, 2017, Novotroitske

I see the children off to a tour to Lviv. Railway station. Children are reluctant to say goodbye to their moms and dads, not just mine.

This life and the war have made us so cautious and suspicious that we expect a trick everywhere, even where everything seems to be fine.

I myself was in Lviv, so I really want my children to also see places that I liked, experience the same positive emotions, and just get distracted from the gray harsh everyday life.

I think my girls will like it too.

July 3, 2017, Novotroitske

My girls returned home with a lot of positive emotions (as I expected) and a lot of impressions. I am very happy that they now have this bright spot in their life, in the midst of war, they have new friends, lots of photos and memories.

12 July 2017, Novotroitske

Each of us has thousands of desires: to lose weight, have more money, a new phone, a trip to the sea, a good, just any job, a quota for the admission of a child to a prestigious university. But, probably, every resident of Donbass who moved from the occupied territory or decided to stay at home, living in the line of fire and hiding in the basement with their children, has one huge common desire – the END of the WAR.

This will probably be the happiest day of our lives for all of us.

I really want to hope that this day will come some day, I would like it to come sooner.

July 20, 2017, Yuriivka

Hurray! We are at sea!!!

We decided that we could not save all the money, even for a day or two, but we escaped to the sea. The sea this year is fabulous, probably, it is also tired of the war. In all my years of life, I have probably never seen the sea of Azov so quiet, calm and clean. You can see the bottom, some even fish come across, tickle our feet. Just a paradise among the ordinary black days, black stripes that don't even occasionally turn white, well, sometimes turn gray and go back to their original black color.

I want peace, peace, warmth and comfort of my own home (the key word is my own!).

July 31, 2017, Novotroitske

Home again (I don't even notice how I call someone else's apartment home), in a village that has become my home for almost three years.

Only now, after going through all these trials of war, we begin to understand that home does not mean walls, although we also want to have our own. Home is the place where your closest and dearest people live: your husband, girls. May be you quarrel with them, try to prove something and defend your point of view, but still, they are your closest and dearest. You understand that they love you and wait for you, and this somehow makes it easier to bear all the difficulties and hardships of life. A life that we didn't plan for ourselves. But now we're trying to survive and make a difference. As long as we're together, we'll survive.

August 11, 2017, Novotroitske

Something happened that I never expected to happen, never even thought would happen. My husband died, died 300 meters from the house, died young, full of energy, with a lot of plans for the future. He died without having time to do much of what he planned, just DIED...

It turned out that the young man had the heart of a 70-year-old man. What war does to us and what stress it brings... It takes our closest ones away from us.

August 13, 2017, Novotroitske

Life was turned upside down. The house is quiet, and we hardly speak to each other, for fear of hurting each other with the memory of what happened. Children walk like shadows. Now this village has forever tied me to the grave of a beloved person. Only now I realize how close and dear he was to me, and that I seldom told him about it. And I do not understand how and for what to live on? What to do?

All plans are destroyed, I understand that I have children, that I have someone to live for, but how to say it correctly, life just became uninteresting without him.

August 19, 2017, Novotroitske

Life doesn't get any easier, although they say that time heals. It probably dulls the pain, not cures it. Or too little time has passed.

It is a pity that the summer ends, but not the war. It feels like everyone in power has just turned a blind eye. They talk a lot, but nothing really changes.

September 1, 2017, Novotroitske

September 1, Knowledge Day. We are not very joyful, but the eldest girl started e 10th grade! And the youngest went to the sixth grade.

How quickly my children grew up. But again lessons, tutoring. Where should I get money? Everything is getting more expensive. I don't know how to survive yet.

Once again, life has forced me to start all by myself, everything is new, hard, and I do not see the end of these events that break my life. But we must somehow live on, put the children on their feet and just live.

September 7, 2017, Novotroitske

What do I want? I want the cool, breathless wind of autumn, the wind of change, to blow away all my problems and troubles. But this doesn't happen in life. God gives man as many trials as he can bear. So this is my path. Just again lack of money and uncertainty in everything.

Today, the brigade of Rinat Akhmetov's Staff “AID" came to our village. We received humanitarian aid. What would we do without her? Now we will somehow survive until my pension payment. Thanks a lot to Rinat Akhmetov, to the guys and girls working in the Fund "AID"! God grant them all success and prosperity in such a difficult, but very necessary and noble cause.

We are glad that you are here and remember us! Your help is very important for us, both for the local population of the contact line and for people like us, especially for those who have been displaced and are in a very difficult situation. Your help is important to us not only financially, but also as a moral support to prove the fact that someone, even if not the state, but people like Akhmetov and his team of like-minded people, remember us and our troubles and try to help. This gives us hope that all the bad things will come to an end, and our children will have a bright future, the main thing is to end the WAR!

When quoting a story, a reference to the source – the Museum of Civilian Voices of the Rinat Akhmetov Foundation – is mandatory, as follows:

The Museum of Civilian Voices of the Rinat Akhmetov Foundation

Rinat Akhmetov Foundation Civilian Voices Museum
Petrivske 2014 2015 2016 2017 Text Civilian's stories women 2014 2015 2016 2017 shelling safety and life support
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