No Longer A Frog In A Well

Shaking my leaves in Shanghai on a beautiful Saturday afternoon.

I can’t say I was ever homesick when I’ve always been disconnected to my birth country. I never felt truly at home; I was merely a visitor. It was as if I was a guest at somebody’s house who was invited for dinner. The hospitality was sincere and the food was tasty, but I felt foreign in a culture I supposedly grew up in. A country, the root of my well-being where I dare to dig out my seed to plant out of its borders. I branch out only to become a tree who changed her leaves, but……….

sometimes I just want to shake those leaves. Once upon a time, I had a big heart and small hands, but I honestly thought I could take on the universe. I pull down the shades only to see myself in a new angle. I know I’m not the only one who has demons swallowing me whole. Swing set without swings. The leaves turn and fall from the trees. I would damage my skin even when there’s no tragedy. Mice and their Cinderella stories. Dwarfs and their Snow White thoughts. I fish for love I know deep down, I cannot bare. No one will be having cake. No, not tonight.

I wave farewell to the moon and greet the sun. I will smile even when I get unfriendly stares. I will keep my head up high when life brings me down. I hold my umbrella and deal with the storms. I wait for the rainbow. I will count my blessings and not amount of friends or money. I don’t mind being heartbroken. I just want to crawl out of my skin and never look back.

I know, all this thinking, how often these thoughts go stale? My brain turns to mush. I thought if I get a little bit older, a little bit wiser, I would know who I am. I wear my dress and let my dreams hang to dry. Even I make a difference. I have a voice of my own; a world I refuse to disown. Even I burn; have asteroids crash to the ground. I dream BIG and appreciate the small things. Even I survive (to revive). Even I get up from scraped knees. I live life under my own terms but sometimes I wonder, do I really call the shots here? Angels laugh in the backseat of my car and all the experiences that I encountered becomes one long joyride.

When I was 6 years old, despite I was hearing impaired and nobody really wanted to be my friend, I’ve always went on my own adventures. When you’re small, your background seems so much bigger. I was merely seeing a glimpse of the world from my window. I remember the days when my dad was lazy to mow the lawn to the point where the grass ended up being taller than me. I felt like I was in a jungle like in Where the Wild Things Are. When you’re afraid to go home, you imagine a place so beautiful that it only exists in your mind.

CAM00214Now that I’m 31 32 years old, living in a studio apartment in Shanghai, I continue to explore what’s around me. Instead of my backyard, I wander in a concrete jungle with 25 million people.

I wrote this almost two years ago, and I finally decided to publish the post. I left Shanghai in August of 2015, went back to Taiwan for a couple of weeks before returning to the States after 3plus years hiatus. All I can say is that reverse culture shock is a thing, and truth be told? I’m still going through it to this day. Leaving Maine in 2006 is like giving up your Seniority, and now no matter where you go – you’re being asked, “Where are you from?” My instinct is to reply, “Taiwan,” but I know they wouldn’t understand. People keep saying, “Welcome back home,” and all I can think of is that I left home instead.

Maybe that is why I didn’t feel like updating my blog, lately. Most days I just want to stay in bed, never go out and just hide from the world. I’m fortunate to have a husband who is supportive, and if it weren’t for him – I would continue to be a frog in a well.

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