When asked “how does it feel to be back home? “, I do an inward search for an answer, because I’m not sure. It feels good, strange, green, comfortable, ordinary… it feels the same. It is as if I woke up and discovered that I dreamed about living in the Middle East for 10 months. As I sit on the back deck watching the rabbits, squirrels, chipmunks, and listening to the birds…I feel like I never left.
I am disoriented. Four days ago, I was transitioning by living in a plush hotel resort on the Persian Gulf. Ten days ago, I was reciting a hip-hop poem at a graduation ceremony in a Middle Eastern college in the small town of Ras Al Khaimah just 45 minutes from Dubai. Now I sit on my front porch in Virginia watching my neighbors jog by.
It feels like something is missing. It feels too ordinary. Ten months ago, I was lamenting the comfortable rut that had become my life. I wore my husband out with constantly referring to our rut…our routines. The same restaurants, same activities, same, same, same. Ten months ago, I was afraid to climb out of the rut, but we did it.
The siren song of comfortable routines beckons, and it’s keeping me off balance. Part of me longs to fall into the embrace of old patterns and old relationships. While another part of me longs for the daily freshness that comes when living in a different country/culture. I miss the surprises that appear around every corner. Living in the UAE was like a “living museum” where everyday scenes could have been a diorama.
Waiting to see which fork to take next.