“Sending a man to the front is unbearable and scary.” How a family of a soldier escapes from war

“Sending a man to the front is unbearable and scary.”  How a family of a soldier escapes from war

“I understand very well women whose husbands from civilian life went to the front. Such women feel that the whole world does not hear them, that they are alone in this state, that there is no support. I understand this, because my husband went to fight in 2014,” says Anna Morozova sadly. She is an ordinary Ukrainian who, before the invasion of the Russians, adored her life, filled with joy. She enjoyed the comfort of her family, accompanied her husband to work, did her favorite sewing, raised a daughter-dancer and a son-Aitish. Everything was broken by Russia. Because of her, Anna’s mother twice came under fire and lost her hearing. Because of Russia, Anna and her children live separately from their own father. Because of Russia, Anna’s parental home is broken. As part of the “Hide Your Own” project, “UP. Life” tells how a military man’s family escapes from war. Anna Morozova “They hid under the sofa from shelling” 39-year-old Anna Morozova lived in the village of Lymany in the Mykolayiv region before the full-scale invasion. Loud explosions were heard in the first days. “We live close to Kherson, and we could very well hear the sounds of those battles that took place on the Antonivsky Bridge. Literally in a few days, shelling quickly reached our region, and the neighboring villages began to suffer from Russian shells. We could see from the windows how from artillery, for one and a half hours in a row. And our floor, windows, and doors were shaking at that time. I don’t know if anyone survived there. In the morning, the rubble was dismantled and some people were resettled to our village,” says a resident of the Mykolaiv Oblast. In the early days, the Morozov family had a particularly hard time, so their 18-year-old daughter Iryna was far from everyone – she studies at the University of Physical Education in Kyiv. And the parents did not know how to take her from there. “My daughter told me that everyone was running away from the dormitory. And my heart was breaking that I couldn’t take her out. She had several attempts to leave, even arrived at the station. But at that very moment a plane arrived nearby, so the trains did not run. And my daughter for several she sat in the passage for hours, froze. And the next day, the remaining students went down to the basement and lived there,” Anna recalls. The woman stayed alone in her house with her 15-year-old son Timofey. They hid under the sofa from the shelling. They slept there – all the time dressed. And the sounds of explosions could be heard continuously – sometimes far away, sometimes nearby, but they practically did not subside. “There was a state of constant exhaustion. Because at night you practically do not sleep. During the day, too, I had just dozed off, and then I woke up from the sound of shells. And the silence was also very frightening. Because when you hear something banging somewhere, you understand that it is not near you, you can to sit still. And when there is silence, you don’t know what is happening and where. You think that now a projectile will fly right into the house,” the woman shares in pain. He says: you are simply afraid of every rustle: you run, hide, then get out, tremble, hide again. After a few days of the war, problems with electricity began, and residents of Lymaniv began to cook food on the street, on barbecues. The Morozov family spent almost a month under fire. And one night at the end of March, Anna’s husband Borys called and told her to pack her things, because at 5 in the morning a car would come to pick them up – it was necessary to get out urgently. “So my son, cat, and dog were first taken to Mykolaiv. And as soon as we left, Lymany began to be brutally shelled. The Russians came close to our village. However, the Ukrainian military desperately did not let the invaders go any further, it was a very bloody battle. I still remember that time I remember with horror,” the woman says. Anna and her husband “Mom came under fire twice” Anna and her son stayed in Mykolaiv for several days, staying with friends. But then a Russian projectile hit the gas station, which was located nearby, and the explosion badly damaged the roof of the high-rise building. This arrival was the last straw – the woman began to look for an opportunity for another move. At first, Morozov managed to get from Mykolaiv to Odesa, paying about three thousand hryvnias for the evacuation. And from Odesa it was decided to go to Kyiv first, because the daughter was still there, and the family really wanted to unite. Eight hours of waiting at the Odesa train station, and Anna and her son are finally on their way to the capital – in an empty carriage, because no one was going to Kyiv, on the contrary, everyone was leaving the city. Next – disturbingly sweet hugs with my daughter. And another way – this time to Rivne, to acquaintances. And in a few days, a hostel was found in which forced migrants were housed, and the family spent two months there. “The first desire was to finally wash. Because my son and I had nowhere to wash for two weeks, maybe three. Therefore, going to bed clean was a long-awaited pleasure for us,” the woman recalls. At that time, horror was happening at home in Limany. Every member of the family suffered from the Russian invasion. Anna’s mother came under fire twice right in her house. When the first flight arrived, the woman consulted in the kitchen. In an instant, all the windows were broken, and she cowered in a corner. And it’s just a miracle that she wasn’t cut by shards of glass. During the second flight, my mother suffered a concussion and lost hearing in one ear. In the house, not only the windows were broken, but also the doors, the roof and ceiling were significantly damaged, and the walls were broken by debris. Anna’s father was more fortunate – he fell into a ditch and was not affected by the explosion. Anna’s mother-in-law hit the wall hard, when the door was blown away by the blast wave, and the woman was pushed several meters away. “Starting with Easter, the arrivals were literally constant: bang-bang-bang – these sounds didn’t stop, people didn’t get out of the basement. They got hypothermia, they got sick all the time,” says the resident of Mykolaiv Oblast. No matter how Anna tried to persuade her parents to leave, she failed – they decided to stay at home until the end, literally. They agreed to evacuate only in the summer, when massive fires started in the village from explosions – both houses and fields burned. And the danger to life was maximum. Then the parents lived in Mykolaiv for a while. But at the end of autumn they returned home. In the spring of 2022, Lymany was a front-line village located only three kilometers from the war zone. Therefore, there is not a single undamaged house in the settlement – human dwellings are either burned to ashes, or are devoid of windows, doors and roofs. Many dead and wounded. Currently, almost all the territories that were captured by Russia have been liberated in the Mykolaiv region. The Kinburn spit remains under occupation – the invaders are shelling peaceful Ukrainian cities from it. “And she worked at night” After moving to Rivne, the Morozov family could not find a permanent home for a long time. Many people were not allowed with animals: they were worried that the four-legged ones would damage their property. “I was very saddened by this attitude. Because someone was left not just without property, but literally without anything – not even a roof over their head. And we did not flee our homes voluntarily, saving all living things. After this evacuation, we realized that the material – these are just things, and in fact they are not worth anything if there is no life,” says the displaced woman. In the end, the family was lucky – a woman let them into her apartment together with a cat and a dog. “We are infinitely grateful to her. By the way, she has sons at the front,” adds Anna. And then the Morozovs began to think about how and with what to earn. So the seamstress, who all her life sewed clothes for people, began to sew clothes for animals. “I’ve been sewing all my life. I didn’t have the opportunity to continue sewing for people, because all the equipment was left at home: a typewriter, a steam iron, and an ironing board,” says Anna. But the woman sewed overalls for her dog by hand. The sheep poodle breed is very shaggy, so it got pretty dirty during walks on the street. It was to protect the dog from dirt that Anna made clothes for the dog. “We went out into the yard in those overalls, the neighbors saw us and asked: where did we order? And when they found out that I sewed it myself, they were interested – maybe I’ll make it for them too? That’s how it started: first one, then the other, and the order went. And then people started recommending me on social networks, that’s how everything started,” says Anna. It was especially difficult for her to sew by hand at first, and it was also not easy to get fabric, because the logistics were disrupted by the war. Later, it was possible to purchase a sewing machine. But there was another problem – a power outage. “All kinds of things happened: I worked at night, and my daughter turned the wheel of the machine with her hands so that I could sew,” the woman recalls. Anna’s daughter and son with the dog “Climbed out of the trenches, called and calmed me down” When Anna arrived in Rivne, her husband was sent there for treatment at a rehabilitation center. The military one was under rubble several times, so it had various damages. “In May 2023, it will be two years since the man was continuously at the front. In March 2022, he was supposed to be on leave after 10 months of service. But on February 24, the great war began. Two years ago, when the man went to fight, our son was on his chest. And then the husband comes, and the son with him is almost the same height,” Anna sighs. He says that living apart is simply incredibly difficult. When the husband came for a few days for rehabilitation, they began to get used to each other again. But then he left again. And the family was left alone again. “Sending your husband to the front is unbearable and scary. You hold on like steel, clenching your teeth, show that you are strong and can handle it. And then, closing the door behind your husband, you already give yourself some slack and let him cry. I really, really want to see you. And so I I have lived here since 2014. Before the Russian invasion, Boris worked at a metallurgical plant, as the deputy head of the section. So I know very well all the pain felt by women whose men from ordinary life went to the front. And I feel very sorry for us. But what can you do, you have to pull yourself together, hang on and wait,” says Anna Morozova in a trembling voice. When the full-scale invasion began, Boris Morozov was in the hot spots. But at the same time, he constantly called his wife and supported her very much. “Climbed out of the wet and cold trenches, caught the connection and calmed me down. And at the same time, he found the strength to defend our country. I am incredibly proud of him!” – says the woman excitedly. Anna Morozova, together with her children, really wants to return home, to Mykolaiv Oblast, to her native Lymany. However, in Rivne, their son Timofey’s education keeps them going – he is getting an education at a computer academy. And the branch in Mykolaiv is not working now. “In addition, there is constant shelling of Ochakov, which is not far from our Lymany, and during phone conversations with my parents I hear those explosions. And ahead is the liberation of the rest of Kherson Oblast, and then Crimea, and we are very close. Therefore, for now we are sitting in Rivne and dreaming of the return of all Ukrainians to their native homes,” says Anna. *** On the “Shelter” website, caring Ukrainians can offer housing for displaced persons by placing a corresponding ad. Therefore, IDPs can find temporary shelter in any region of Ukraine or abroad, for a few days or for a longer period. The filter system will help you easily choose the option that meets your criteria and quickly contact the owner. This is a completely volunteer initiative. It was launched on the first day of the full-scale invasion by People’s Deputy of Ukraine Halyna Yanchenko. Later, the “Shelter” program received state support. Homeowners who sheltered displaced persons receive compensation from the state for the payment of communal services – 900 hryvnias per person per month. Now there are about 16,000 ads on the site. The page has been translated into 40 languages. Victoria Yarizhko, specially for UP. Life

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