The road back to the states was an eventful and challenging one, but we’re back! It’s only been five days, and I’ve already gained so much insight. You know I like sharing, so….
Repatriation Realizations Week One:
1. Family, whoever you love and consider that to be, will always make you feel greater than any circumstance and challenge. They’ll always simultaneously keep you humble and elevated.
2. The long distance has irreparably damaged my relationship with Chick-Fil-A and fast food in general. It’s just not the same. That’s a very good thing.
3. We are wasting time discussing anything other than rebuilding our communities. There is so much wealth in investing in ourselves. I cringed when I heard someone suggest a new chain restaurant that is three doors down from its black-owned competitor that’s been there for years. Guess where I’m going. And, I definitely dropped my tea when someone warned me about the area we chose to temporarily stay because it’s deemed “the hood,” but most of our neighbours are white investors who recognize its value. We’ve got to stop being afraid of ourselves.
4. Do not take your children to Target, especially when one is your husband. It will end badly.
5. I didn’t miss American TV much, and certainly not its commercials. Every one of them tells me to eat a super-large, super-greasy, slab of fried saucy meat with a side of lard-laden starch; that I need to diet, have straight blonde hair, and ivory skin to be beautiful; that I need drugs to stay alive, and they all serve as a reminder of the disproportionate distribution of wealth and resources. We own nothing.
6. I completely understand how one group of people can see themselves as superior to another, and how that manifests itself in daily courses of action.
7. I completely understand how one group of people can see themselves as inferior to another, and how that manifests itself in daily courses of action.
8. I left a country listed as number one in structured education, but lacked innovation. I met a seven-year-old neighbour that couldn’t spell his four-letter name, but asked me for Now’N Laters so he could make something. We have work to do.
9. The racial line and the poverty line intersect and merge, but there are some overlaps. Poverty is genocide, and sometimes the death is slow and pervasive, but overall, it’s quick and methodical. We have work to do.
10. I miss my surreal expat life already, but I’m happy to be home. We have work to do.