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“I didn’t want to leave Moscow in 2015, it was my husband’s decision. His intuition must be better than mine.

I grew up in the Soviet Union. A sudden enemy attack, a war, was something all Soviet children were scared of. But we never ever expected our own country to become the aggressor. It’s like waking up in some upside down world.

Do you remember this series, where a policewoman finds out that the killer of her best friend’s teenage son is her own husband, a loving father of their two kids? That is about how I’m feeling. “How could you not know?”

I’m very Russian on the inside: tea, snow, Tolstoyevsky. On the outside I teach my students Russian language and Russian literature and write poetry myself in my native language. But no part of me associates with fighting Ukraine.

I was brought up by my two grandmothers, both telling me stories of pre-revolutionary Russia, so my Russia is my ancestors. I am glad that they didn’t live to see this shame”.

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