Tuesday, September 9, 2008

A Work in Progress

Sometimes, there comes a time in your life when you think "What am I supposed to do in my life? Why am I here? Do things really happen for a reason? " In search for these questions, many people find the urge to experience new things, expand their horizons. Some people enroll in a ceramics class, others register for meditative yoga at the Y. Then, there are those who travel. They travel as far as Timbuktu and as close as the backyard to their own home. As for me, I fall into all the these categories. I did all those things in hopes to know myself better, to become really good friends with a very important person...ME.

Two years ago, I was at the worst place I could be, shattered into a million pieces after having my heart broken by an unexpected divorce. At that moment, I had no hope or faith, everything was dark. But as my dad says, "Despu├ęs de la tormenta siempre viene la calma." This is so very true. It didn't happen in a blink of an eye, but I managed to put myself together and re-introduce myself to ME. Since my crossroad moment of choosing the path of triumph over the path of self-pity, I have made it my duty to challenge myself, to experience new things, to meet new people, to not let fear get in my way of ANYTHING I do, to not take life for granted, but instead to live life to the fullest. Granted, there are times when I don't follow my own suggestions or advice, or anybody else's for the matter. Regardless, it's because I challenge myself that I am here...in Buenos Aires. Before getting here, I went through a lot of obstacles (post-divorce obstacles aside), some harder than others. I quit my job (done with pleasure). I sold my house (done with a little skepticism but very liberating). I said bye to my family and friends....this was the hardest thing I have ever had to do. I have never been away from my family for more than a month...so you can only imagine what a withdrawal symptom I'm experiencing. Sometimes, I think that my family has become an addicting drug that I just can't quit. Without my family and with Jackson at work, I find myself trying to tune into ME again. I admit, I'm one of those people who doesn't like being by themselves because I start thinking about everything from A to Z. The truth of the matter is, I NEED to be alone at times, even if it scares the shit out of me. This is the only way I will get to know myself better, the only way I will become at peace with being away from home, the only way I can reconnect with that incredible person named Erika.

Like I said before, overcoming a disillusioned heartache was the first hardest thing I have ever had to do which brought about self-empowerment, growth, independence, healing and reconnection. A true blessing in disguise. Well, the second hardest thing, being away from my family, has led to the same. Of course both situations are different types of sadness. Nevertheless, moments of sadness bring about change. Being away from home is allowing me to grow in more ways than one.

Till this day, I don't have everything put together. I don't have the answers to all my questions. There's still lots of things I have to learn, lots of places left to see and most definitely lots people left to meet and befriend. There is still more self-empowerment and growth. There always is. But that's okay because I like to consider myself a work in progress.


Sallycat said...

Hi dear Erika

This is a brave and honest post.
I can relate to it and I salute you for it. In some parts you could have been writing about me.

Even the time frame is the same.

The main difference I think, from the little I know of your story, is that I left my country a bit sooner and for a time here I was completely alone. So I do truly understand the hard part about leaving your life and people that you love behind. But I also know some small way down the road, that for me it was the path I had to take in order to connect (in my case for the first time in adulthood) with Sally.
And I am doing so, slowly but surely. It's not always an easy road but I believe that to keep following it is absolutely what I need to do.

One thing that brings me great comfort when I miss my family, or have to say goodbye to them is this: my sadness means that I love and I am loved in return, and that is beautiful and I am grateful for it. One of the things I have found out along my particular way, is that I am capable of loving another and that I can accept that I am loved in return.

And time has been a kind teacher: being in Buenos Aires means that I am always saying goodbye to someone: friends and family come and go. But in the past 18 months I have also experienced the sheer joy of the 'reunions' and the 'welcome backs' and gradually I have become more accepting of the sadness of letting go because in time there will very often be the joy of the 'return'.

I am thinking of you and supporting you on your journey tonight, and sending you a strong hug.


Erika Borbor said...

Thank you so much SC for you kind, inspirational words and for the hug:-)

You're absolutely right in saying that time is a kind teacher. Everything we go through in life is a lesson. Sometimes, it takes some of us longer to learn but time is patient. Now when I look back, I laugh and think that old Erika was so young and unexperienced. When I look at myself now, I see some who's grown in so many ways. Like you, I've connected for the first time with myself as an adult. I'm still connecting and reconnecting, searching and finding. I know that the bumps I come across are necessary...those are my life lessons.

I love your saying "my sadness (from goodbyes) means that I love and I am loved in return." I will have to think of this whenever I miss home.
You are an inspirational woman:-)

stilllifeinbuenosaires said...

Hi Erika,

Funny--I was just going to say, "You know, Sally just wrote about this in Sallycat," when I saw that she had responded. One of her latest posts really connected with your feelings.

I hope your post was written in joy rather in sadness. (Or maybe our sentiments are always a mixture?)

Un abrazo grande!

Erika Borbor said...

Hi Still Life!

I had a mixture of feelings when I wrote this entry. I was missing Chicago...I was a little mad with the bureaucracy involved in getting my nursing license approved here...I was reflecting, thinking about my future...I was feeling empowered...lots of things were going on in my head. But, the last thought I had before I went to bed that night was "the move to Buenos Aires was/is a necessary change." I have met so many wonderful people because of the move and for that I am happy:-)


ShareWorldLove said...

Hey Erika, I just came across your site and I think it's wonderful! Hang in there. I know it's tough being in a different country. When I was young, my parents decided to move to Uruguay and that was a huge eye opener. I was there for almost 7 years and decided to come back. It was a good, interesting, exciting and wonderful experience. I'm glad you took the risk of doing what so many other people don't have the guts to do. It will get better but I know some of the times it will be hard. I've recently been to Chicago (my first visit and I absolutely loved it!) I will post the pictures next week on my blog in your honor. Take care.