In a shopping center “cantina,” so-called, with American and Latin pop music playing on the overhead, drinking a Mexican beer served by a Latino bartender, wishing for a shot of Cuervo Tradiciónal Plata served in a frozen salted glass with ice and Topo Chico, I actually find myself missing my life in Mexico.
What is this sense of place? Why do I feel more like an alien on the west coast of my home country than I did when I actually was an alien?
Why am I so homesick now?
Perhaps it’s because I’m reading through my dad’s memoirs again. Seeing the photos of myself as an infant is like reliving, through my dad’s mind, my earliest memories.
I feel a desperate longing to be somewhere–even Mexico, it seems–besides where I am now.
I’ve made some risky choices over the past several months–choices that, in the past, I would never have made because of responsibilities and obligations. I have made them in spite of–or maybe, if I’m honest, because of–the uncertainty of the outcome. I have reached farther than I’ve ever allowed myself to reach before.
And now, I don’t want to be here.
I don’t want to go back, either. So the trick is, it seems, to be here now.
And from here and now, in spite of the painful longing for “home,” I choose to go forward.
Where will “forward” take me? I don’t–can’t –know. But I do I know it will be beyond this painful longing. This fear. This uncertainty.
There will be more and different choices. More and different fears and uncertainty. More learning.
There will be growth.
I hope there will be improvement.
Because I have chosen to extend my reach beyond my grasp, I feel the pain of homesickness, but I choose not to go “home.” I feel the fear of not knowing what’s coming, and I choose to prepare myself for whatever comes. I choose to think of what’s happening as an adventure.
I choose to feel the fear and go forward, anyway.