There is always reverse culture shock when you go from an extremes– like from India to the US or the US to India. Having just been back earlier this year I didn’t expect I would need “transition” time, but I as is the case often times, I was mistaken.
It has taken me a few weeks to get back into “American” mode and even by that I don’t exactly mean it in the fullest sense–I’m not sure that’s even possible anymore. When you live somewhere for a time, not just visit, whether you like it or not it becomes a part of you and it is not easy to jump back into being (nor should you) the person you were before you left. Clear as mud, right? Perhaps some over-pondering has gone on as well.
Anyway. It’s been several, um, say about nine years since I’ve been in Georgia and around family during this time of year. When I arrived the leaves were beautiful and the skies were blue. I have to say how lovely it was to soak in the climate and sleep without the nuisance of mosquitoes buzzing around my head. But the holidays bring out so much of the materialism in our culture, it’s hard for me to wrap my head around what a balanced approach looks like in this area. It’s been a little stressful honestly for reasons I can’t fully articulate, so I’m just going to leave it at that.
But the food has been another story. Yes, the food has been wonderful. That may sound quite shallow, but there is something about my mom making biscuits (American ones, not cookies), gravy and bacon for breakfast that makes my heart happy, if not also clogged by all the grease. I’m also very pregnant, which doesn’t help either. Cravings can now be fulfilled and believe me I’m making the most of my A) ability to drive myself places and B) the beauty that is the Publix Bakery. Cherry Danish anyone?
I’m also resting. Which is something I’m not always good at doing when we come into town for visits. But this seems like a time in life when I’m not overly concerned with taking care of anyone but me and this little baby boy who should be making an appearance any day now. My current goal is to make it through the next week after that… well, I have no idea. I’m learning to live with the tension that exists in life or my life at least. That’s probably not very American, but it seems to be human as none of us really know what tomorrow holds no matter how much we plan.
Life really is just moment-by-moment.
So in this moment, I’m finishing my lemonade, eating a peanut butter cup and enjoying a pumpkin spice-scented candle. Perhaps tomorrow I’ll do some more nesting-type things like cleaning bathrooms, sewing and vacuuming. But probably I’ll just eat a bag of Doritos, watch a video with my daughter and monitor the flight status of my boys who will be arriving here, finally, tomorrow night after five weeks of separation. I’m very much looking forward to the moment they arrive and the big hugs from our guys. Being together again will be good for us all.