I don’t know how to begin this, my last post on my blog. When I started writing here four years ago I was in desperate need of an outlet, anything to help me process what we were going through. I loved retelling my stories here – when our car broke down for the fifth time that month, when I had to walk to the bus in the pouring rain in an orange jumpsuit, when I found out I was pregnant with Lu. The writing helped keep me sane and made me feel connected to the people and places I missed – it served me well.
And now, it’s officially been two years since I left Chile.
How is it possible that that much time has passed? How is it possible that it hasn’t been more?
To be honest, typing that makes me feel like someone punched me in the stomach. I still miss it, our life there. The near-constant hardship felt empowering, a feeling I could call on whenever I needed resolve. I still think of the things we did there when I’m feeling off balance.
I feel like I’ve been in a hamster wheel since I stepped back into life in the states and I just now sense its slowing. Or maybe I’m slowing it deliberately. I’ve thrown myself into a constant state of motion, of starting over, of mothering and work, of putting too much into certain things and not enough into others and of distraction. I’ve accomplished a lot, but I’ve regressed in ways too. I’d like to be able to sit still with myself like I used to, staring at the Pacific. It was a struggle then but I was present. Sometimes here I feel like I’m trying to forget about being somewhere else.
Chile for me feels like an otherworldly adventure; it was like a five-year long test where the teacher made you grade yourself and then crumpled up your paper and threw it away. And without trying to sound overly dramatic, those were the most formative years of my life. To leave this space without recognition of that would be dishonest. More importantly, I can see now that I was also not a victim but a willing participant in the incredible and brutally trying life we held there. Things seem more at peace now though, like we’ve settled into a new rhythm that makes sense for who we are. I’m so thankful for that.
Occasionally, I slip into feeling like my life is too small. Living in the town I grew up in has its perks but the downside is that new memories are harder to come by. For someone like me, nostalgia creeps in everywhere.
Lucia helps though, as does our new house – a home many years in the making.
I hope that you’ve enjoyed the blog all these years, thanks for listening.