|Hey Anne? This is the purple sofa I wanted to
marry and bear children….
This is going to be a fairly personal episode of the Lettuce, so if that sort of thing makes you twitchy you might want to hit the back button on your browser.
Ever since I moved back to the US on 19 May, 2011, I have been lost. At first I was lost because I was back in my foreign home. Let me give you an example. One of the first things I did was go to Walmart with my parents to pick up some things I needed. After about ten minutes in the store, I had to go outside and ring My Mister (who was still in the UK and, sadly, didn’t get it) and take some deep breaths because it was just too much. Too much choice. Too much colour. Too much light. Too much.
I had come back here to stop being lost in the UK. But what I’ve found is that I wasn’t lost when I was there at all. I was me, the me that doesn’t have to be the best greyhound parent or the competent seamstress or the flawless interpreter. I didn’t have a lot of the distractions or responsibilities there that I have here. There weren’t as many people there for me to disappoint. My Mister and I spent a lot of time together because basically we had…each other.
Don’t get me wrong, he had friends and family there, but because I was not as outgoing as I could have been, I only had a few friends and my inlaws. But My Mister and I are different in that way…he doesn’t depend on his friends to define him like I do.
I thought that the things that kept me from being lost were in the USA: Greyhound Crossroads. The Hounds of East Fairhaven. Follow That Hound. My Deaf and Interpreter friends. Wrong. Since I’ve been back, I’ve had to take a job that isn’t really what I wanted to do so that I could afford to bring My Mister and Daisy over from the UK and adopt Clowny. I’m still in that job because there isn’t anything in my field that would offer a comparable salary. I see things every day that make me regret the cowardice that led me back here two years ago.
I wish I could wind up this post with a happy and confident “but now I’m no longer lost” sentiment, but I can’t. Maybe tomorrow. Maybe Christmas if we make it over to visit my inlaws and my adopted home. Maybe not. I try to remember that “not all who wander are lost” and see myself as wandering instead…but that refrain is getting old. Very, very old. Is this the curse of the repatriate?
One of my expat/repat friends has a statement on one of her signature graphics that says something about coming home to find what has changed is you…maybe that is what’s going on after all.