Posted: 3rd December 2009 by admin in Uncategorized

I am currently living in the US, which is the country I was born in, carry a passport of, and generally strive to be alien of.

As a TCK who went through some issues relating to living here the first time I came back, quite often all I can think about is getting out. The first time I was here, I struggled with having grown up differently, but thinking I was mostly American, but feeling different while I was here. I have fairly few regrets about getting out, because moving out into the world, especially to a new country (Switzerland) was like a rebirth. It was like growing up in open air, getting drowned for a short time and then as if you finally came out for air. It was so… refreshing, to live in a place as a foreigner, to hear multiple languages around me, everything.

The decision to come back here wasn’t really an easy one. But part of it was accepting in my mind that part of the reason I had so much trouble earlier was very much my responsibility. It wasn’t my being a TCK, it wasn’t America’s fault for being silly, it was me being utterly unprepared and never doing something about it.

We all have a lot more control over our lives than we think. And even when we don’t, it’s important to realize what aspects we DO have control over. Despite all that I disliked, felt discomfort about, and feared about my “home” culture, there were steps I could have taken to prepare myself which I didn’t.

So upon returning, I decided that I should take a mature and adult perspective. It’s all about how you decide to look at it, after all.

And while I’ve discovered that, with some effort, I *can* live here, I’d much prefer not to. And with this conclusion I feel myself think wistfully back to my life in Europe.

And that’s where some risk lies.

It is very, very easy to attach romantic exaggerations with the misty eyes of hindsight. There were times before, and I catch myself thinking now, when I think “It’d all be much better, if I were living over there.” Logically, and objectively, I think I really would be better off there, BUT there’s the little wriggling thought which threatens to say that everything is better there.

And I think a lot of TCKs have felt this way, at some point or another. It’s easy to be unhappy in a place, especially the country you’re supposed to call home yet you do not. And in that situation you get preoccupied with the thought of how much better it was where you were before.

I guess this blog is focused on simple advice: Watch your thoughts. It’s easy to get carried away only to be inevitably disappointed.

  1. Anonymous says:

    thank you for the insights, Daniel!
    I read the post and the comments below! and it’s quite true that we have to accept that we can never go home and that is a part of growing up. What is your plan for the future, if you don’t mind me asking Daniel? Do you plan on moving outside the U.S.?