My Rectilinear Life


Dalian, China
December 11
US expat living in China. Another 40-something woman experiencing mid-life crisis, only this time in China, with dumplings.


Overworkedtiredandnumb's Links

SEPTEMBER 16, 2011 4:40PM

Home Again

Rate: 1 Flag

I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again.  I’m a big fan of cognitive behavioral therapy, the main premise of which is perhaps, to some, not very encouraging; namely, that “sometimes I think stupid things.”  Stupid is a strong word, but the idea is that your brain pushes untruths on you: false projections, exaggerations, wild overgeneralizations.  My brain is particularly good at presenting me with such absurdities packaged in a sort of romantic, melodramatic way.  Frankly, they’re alluring.  “I’m alone. I’m misunderstood.”  Such ideas take you back to the teenage years and maybe even are a way to reclaim youth.  If I think like a teenager, then I’m young!  Hahaha, that would be so great if it weren’t so patently obvious and true that teenagers are idiots.  See the trap?  Sometimes I think stupid things.

The trap is particularly well-set during transitions. And the irony, right?, is that I seek transitions like a drug.  I’m the one who sets the traps and waits to catch myself, offering up a great opportunity to bash myself around for a few months. This year’s transition is our return home from China, where we lived for almost 2 years.  China was the last trap.  The one where I prepared myself by not preparing myself and got zapped by the tazer of cultural differences that I will never understand. (Though I’d like to understand them there’s just not enough time or money to indulge myself in such a selfish pursuit.)

Now we are “home.” And we are not.  We’ve returned to the very place that we left.  Every guide and well-meaning friend warned that it wouldn’t be home.  I *knew* it wouldn’t be home.  It isn’t home.  Now I have to make it home, especially for my daughters (aged 8 and 5). “This is not my home!  I’m alone.  I’m misunderstood.” Sometimes I think stupid things.

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You know, I really understand this post. -R-