Friday, April 25, 2014

Home is wherever I'm with you

Living abroad for a long term is an invigorating experience. You see the world through a candid eye of a child surrounded with an uncomfortable lingering feeling of anxiety dancing with an exhilarating excitement.  

However after a few years the glam just fades away, you land from planet glittery dreams on planet earth of concrete and hard reality.
Big news Folks! The relocation comes with a price. Your landmarks such as family, (friends) and comforting day-to-day routine are erased. Insidiously you enter a no man's land, stuck in-between, nor here neither there, somewhere you call home (at least for a few years) but deep down inside you know it isn't home and above all you won't be staying long. So why bother to invest time and effort to rebuild everything over and over again. That's why I never bothered to involve in anything but in our family of 4. 

In general friends are scarce and adding distance to friends equals a vague souvenir. When I see homies, they have a steady job, a family, a circle of friends, a house, I feel so jealous. I'm in my mid-thirties and I have a family, struggling to get a job, friends and a house... I don't want to think about it (decent housing in Paris is expensive). It isn't for the comfy financial part of the deal, I so envy the boring day to day routine, the place I can call home. The grass is always greener on the other side, right?!

I always wonder if life would be easier if … if I stayed and did what the average is doing: graduate, get a job, found a family, buy a big house. … or if I packed and headed back home right away. I don't think I would be happy with that life though. I would feel trapped as a bird in a cage, I would feel uncomfortable as I am today when I talk to relatives or remaining friends back home. I feel we are at zillion years from each other, we grew cruelly apart from each other. The feeling is not new it dated from my childhood and got stronger as I travelled around the world for 5 years in search of myself before conforming to the path of what was expected from me : get a degree at a business school. I graduated with honours with a double degree in International trade and in finance.

I'm ranting now because my life has been stagnant : got stuck in mother mode despite many attempts to get back on the job market. And B-E-L-I-E-V-E me!! Being a housewife is not valued at all on the job market, specially in financial sector. Furthermore we, women, loose our market value as a workforce when we get pregnant and the slope of devaluation is even steeper if we stay home and educate your offspring. Even better leisure such as golf, crafting, helping elderlies or disabled people, etc. are considered a waste of time, you are expected to go on a golf course with a business partner to strike a deal, you follow a craft course because the CEO's wife is going and you want her to put a good word for you, philantrophy is on the paper only = hard truth. Every move should be work related.
I'm not saying that being employed would be the key to all my miseries but it is a step forward in the process of get all the pieces of me together. As I believe that one can be defined as a sum of multiple layers of behavioural and mental characteristics. I don't try to fit in the mould of conformism, I'm trying to explore the self through work. 

Life hasn't been easy lately but I wouldn't trade it for the world. I surely won't be the same person as I am today. Of course they are ups and downs but that's the beauty. I think life is here, now at this very moment. I notice I live too much in the past, I'm filled with negative thoughts and energies which I repeat over and over again without being able to cut the vicious circle. Surely frustration and lack of self esteem play a crucial role. I feel resentful and angry about being in limbo and stalled. I feel with time I lost myself somewhere…In a way I'm thankful to be at this stage I have this opportunity to reflect on myself and to try to figure out the why before the how.