My Not-So-Unique Journey

Posted: 13th December 2009 by admin in Uncategorized

I’m slightly different than the majority of stories I’ve read in this community. Most are global experiences. I’m a domestic TCK within Canada so my patriotic ties are indisputable. I attended 9 schools–in some cases, moving from one side of a city to another or one side of the country to another–before I graduated high school. (If you know anything about Canada, our depth of multiculturalism is as wide as our land mass.) My family never stayed longer than 2.5 years in any place and when I did have the opportunity to stay, I just didn’t know how. It caused me great distress when I couldn’t move. I became very claustrophobic…anxious…that I found ways to move. That pattern has unknowingly followed me into my adulthood…

It’s interesting analyzing the choices and the seemingly innate reasons driving those choices in hindsight. I have a mish-mash of academics behind me that serve as a reminder to that driving force. When I could no longer move physically as I’d chosen to marry a firmly rooted individual, my mind transported itself from one new experience to the next through the acquisition of intellectual enhancement. There wasn’t a time throughout my 11 years of marriage that I wasn’t in school learning about something. Intellectual property takes on a whole new meaning when I consider society’s definition of “roots”.

At any rate, I consider myself pretty self-aware but up until the last few months, I had no idea I attended 9 schools from K-12, let alone that my need for change and diversity had a root cause called TCK! I thought I was just different. “Diverse” I didn’t realize that my uncomfortableness about how to respond to “where are you from?” wasn’t all that unique! Now as an adult who has children of her own, stability is a very conscious concept and I constantly find myself asking, “AM I confusing stability with stagnation?” before pursuing change. Is it my ‘uniqueness’ that wants this is or is this a relevant reason to create disruption?

When I made the realization and ‘confronted’ my mother about it (I was slightly angry), she referred to my experience as “You’re just like a military brat!” and that opened the doors to learning about all of you…and me. However, I think the mind and the spirit is an awe-inspiring thing. It amazes me that even if we have the smallest inkling of curiousity about why things are the way they are, the universe will present ways to explore and heal by sending us opportunities to do so. I had been doing a lot of “the work” already by following that intuitive feeling we all naturally seem to possess…

Prior to being introduced to the TCK community, I started a project to learn about myself and others…. . Everything in that site is me from picture choice to words to colours, etc…I found that I learned more about myself by listening to other’s stories as their projections became reflections of my own unique complexities…

Anyway, that’s my story summed up, neat and tidy.
I think that’s the most I’ve shared with respect to acknowledging my developmental years.

I think when we embrace who we are and focus on the things we’ve gained as opposed to the things we believe we’ve lost (certain voids will always exist–we can’t go back to correct), we find peace. And with that inner peace, we find acceptance. And with acceptance, we’re able to transcend the intangible boundaries we’ve come to rely on to keep us isolated. No one is trying to keep us out except maybe ourselves. We belong everywhere…at least, I believe so.

  1. Anonymous says:

    This struck me:

    How often have you been accused of “going native”? How often have others told you “NO, I want to know what YOU like/enjoy.”

    Whenever someone asks me questions like that I would open my mouth and then close it. I don’t know what say, I don’t know where to start. I find that I can be a bit boring at times LOL

    Kudos to you for “coming out of the TCK closet” 🙂 I am only 27 and I am still struggling. Sometimes I think I got it sometimes I don’t. I’m still struggling but I think I have learned to embrace that, I don’t wish to completely know who I am but I also don’t want to be completely lost. I think a balance of both might be healthy for TCKs…

    Good luck on your journey for self-identification 🙂