Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Six Months Later

Six months ago today, I got on an airplane from my home to come home.

Since I returned, everything has changed and everything is the same. When I left Oman, I was positive that I would spend my senior year hiding away, just biding my time until I could go off to college. I was determined to have a miserable time, to scrape by until I could go on to bigger and better things. Somehow, the opposite has happened. This year, I've developed relationships with my friends in Beloit that shock me by their depth. I was told that I would probably not relate with my old friends, but that has been entirely inaccurate.

I didn't plan for any of this to happen. But it did. This reminds me of my whole year abroad, the shock at the emotions, the joy and sorrow and stress. Oman was entirely unprecedented, but so has been my senior year. I came home expecting solitude, and have found incredible friendship, and with one special person, even romance. My return has shocked me in how absolutely wonderful it has been. I've found that my friends--old and new--are just like me. I had many of them over just a few nights ago for a night of heavy drinking--of tea, that is! My Senior year is thus far a roaring success socially. I'm still excited for college, but I'm also just loving my life in the moment. 

That's not to say that I don't miss Oman. It's on my mind constantly, and the lessons I've learned from it are continually with me. Some days there is nothing I want to do more than cry over the loss of my parallel life, that is continually slipping away from me. I'm losing my Arabic skills rapidly, I've lost the 30 pounds of excess "love" that I gained, and I find that the pain I feel over missing everything is less acute. It still hits in waves, but they rarely come.

I feel like I've reached a point in this readjustment process in which I can merge my Omani life with my American one. I wore my jalabiyya for one of my senior pictures and had an Eid party this fall. Little strands of my Omani life are most certainly still a part of who I am now. 

I will never forget, but it's my time to move on.