First off, I just want to say THANK YOU Aaron Timm! There have been so many recent days that I have just wanted to give up on writing my blog, but seeing words of encouragement reminds me how much I actually do sharing my thoughts and words with the world. Thank you Aaron for your constant words of encouragement, you already know, but again your support is priceless and has been like fuel to a slowly fading fire.
So…I’ve blogged about what I have been doing since I have been home, but haven’t touched on what I have been feeling since I’ve been back. How does it feel to be gone for 10 months traveling the globe and living abroad then to re-enter the life I once lived?
Since I’ve been back in the states it’s been like a floodgate of emotions have opened inside me and frankly it’s been hard to control them. On one hand my heart is overflowing with happiness to be around my loving family, wonderful friends and beautiful Seattle; on the other hand, I feel disjointed and overwhelmed.
Wandering around Seattle and the East side is an emotional roller coaster. I pass a park where I use to lay in the sun and read. I smile. I drive past my old apartment where my heart was broken. My insides ache. I walk into my favorite bar which holds a thousand drunken memories. I laugh. I sit on a wooden sidewalk bench where I was kissed. Internal butterflies soar. I idle on the bridge, the water glistens in the sun and the boats below putter by. I yearn for summer days and recklessness. There are so many forgotten memories that escape me as I venture throughout my old stomping grounds, it’s like I am not in the present but watching a twilight rerun of events.
Driving in my car, every turn, corner, street, exit or vista reminds me of my life before I left to travel. It’s my past flashing before my eyes but in real time. It is the same, but different–like my friends, we laugh together as if no time has past, but the onset of wrinkles around our eyes, a few pounds shed or gained and a new haircut reveals that time has elapsed.
Then I leave the familiar city streets to take comfort in my old belongings. I open my dresser drawer and see clothes I use to wear My clothes still fit me like they did before but they feel like a stranger’s wardrobe. I feel disconnected with the things I own, I no longer have an attachment towards them.
Past emotions and feelings I once held also return with full force…which sometimes leaves even me bewildered. “Did I just say that?” I think to myself. “I don’t even feel that way.” But, regardless words come out of my mouth–words that I would have said before I left on my trip, but not now. It’s like I have become a ventriloquist to an alter me–the me from a year ago.
It’s quite ironic that I was half-way done with this blog post when I took a break and went to run errands with my sister-in-law and she, independently, brought up this same topic of conversation, in the sense that surroundings and people directly affect one’s personality and demeanor. Think about how different you act when you go home to your parent’s house for the holidays, you play the role of a child; when you see an old high school or college friend you haven’t seen in a long time, you play out the old nickname they once called you; when you get together with a former girlfriend/boyfriend, you become lost momentarily in past feelings and emotions, making you say or do things you currently wouldn’t do.
It would be weird to watch myself on a big screen right now–my life as a movie. Being home, I am filling past roles when, the real Cindy is back in Italy, where my heart and present life are waiting. And, although I wanted to bring pieces of it with me to share and tell, only so much can fit into a suitcase–leaving a lot of “me” a continent and an ocean away.