The most complicated journey.
Wednesday, 01.30.2013 - 10:29 am.

Last night I was thinking, perhaps tonight I'd be having my farewell party, a meeting with classmates and friends I made over these past two years in Chile. There'd be a "come back someday" from their part and a "come visit me" from my mine but perhaps from then on all contact would be seldom and through Facebook and the like. And I'd say with a smile "I'm going home to do many things with what I learned here!".

Instead, I was cuddling with Andrew, although we did have some close friends over. They will look after our cats during our trip. I couldn't have ever imagined that my most complicated trip, logistically and emotionally, would be the one of going home after finishing my master's. Unlike what I expected when I arrived here: I'm not moving back in, I'm just visiting; and I'm not going alone.

Tonight Andrew and I will take a bus at 10 pm. We'll wake up in Santiago (to close my scholarship file, hopefully without trouble) and on friday we'll travel all day to get to my hometown. The only place I'd ever lived in before I came here two years ago (minus the one or two months I'd spend in Houston at my Brother #1's house, that was awesome too).

I've had a love-hate relationship with my parents in my head for weeks, knowing they are waiting for me and love me to death, but also realizing they've put so much pressure on me since they found out I changed my life plans. Explanations and justifications and lectures, the same things over and over. Perhaps, if one counted the words spoken, it wouldn't be as much, but the tension it's really tangible. I perceive it in their voices, their tones, their frowns, my mom's illness.

It's been exhausting having to deal with their own grief on top of my own. Hell, it's been hard for me, too. My plans didn't go as I expected. Which is a blessing indeed, I have Andrew and the opportunity to stay in a place with a much better quality of life than my original destination. But I can't help mourning my default plan, the one at the end of the first paragraph. I'll come to terms with it but I wish my parents did the same. To an extent, I'm aware. I may never get over this sense of loss entirely and neither will they, but also, life goes on.

I'm putting it into perspective. This is harder for them than it is for me. Period.

My siblings have been an incredible support, I can't emphasize this enough. My sister, especially. Although that too gives me survivor's guilt. Brother #3 and my sister still live where I'd be living if I was leaving Chile for good. And really, they deserve better than those conditions. They are brilliant in their fields and that context provides little chance to work with brilliance. It's a relief they are there for my parents, and that Brothers #1 and #2 visit when they can. But that's it. I know they have plans of leaving too, but not within a specific timeframe for now.

I suppose I hadn't given myself the time to think about all this. I mean, I think about all this constantly, every day. I'm grateful for being here and guilty for not being there. It's different writing it all in the same space, I suppose. I have avoided thinking much about the trip because then I overthink, but it'll be good that they meet Andrew and spend time with him. He makes everything easier for me and he's taken the "responsibility" of being with me very seriously, privately and in front of everyone else, and that's just beautiful. I want them to see what a great man he is.

So perhaps I won't be able to write in two or three weeks while I'm at home. But I'll try, I'll do my best to drop a line though, it's important that I do. My parents and Andrew will meet on saturday and I hope from then on many of these emotional knots will be untied.

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