Today’s post is a bit more personal, a bit more exposing of my feelings and thoughts during this difficult time.I looked through some photos to match what I want to write about and I found this photo that I took last week, the photo featured at the top of this blog post.
It’s a photo of a short road, one that leads seemingly nowhere particular, exciting, or worthy. It just intersects with another similar road, near a boring little beige tile house.
But when I saw this photo, it spoke to me in a different way today.
Today I am battling a lot of negative feelings. I had a somewhat bad day, which was preceded by three more weeks of bad days.
Today kind of got to me.
Lagos got to me.
Being here is possibly the hardest thing I’ve done. Even last year, when I received heart breaking medical news, I still felt part of a world where I belonged. After several different doctors’ appointments, I had the luxury (one that I did not recognize at the time) to go home, be in my space, with my cats, and suffer in a familiar place.
Was I always happy? No. But did I feel comforted by being able to go home, truly home? Yes, and comforted in a way that I completely took for granted.
For me, Lagos is an entirely uncomfortable place. My soul feels no solace here; my mind feels no rest. Each night when I go to sleep, I am disturbed by nightmares so vivid, strange, and disturbing that I usually wake up with a jolt, recognizing that I am still not at home.
Even in slumber, I find no rest here. It’s starting to get to me. I am unhappy.
Living abroad is a great opportunity to meet new folks and learn about the world. It’s a great opportunity to accept the world into your heart and mind. It’s the ultimate opportunity to see what you’re made of.
But, I no longer know what I am made of. Am I tough because I haven’t asked to be sent home or, even worse, just shown up at the airport begging to be let into any plane going to the USA.
I can just hear myself pleading to a Nigerian counter clerk at Delta Airlines, “Boss! Let me in!”
Am I tough because I have chosen to keep waking up here, even though I feel more lost and rudderless than I ever have in my life?
Or am I lying to myself? Am I sugar coating shit or putting lipstick on the pig?
And these thoughts lead me to wonder: Where does this road lead?
Is it a short, somewhat meaningless road, destined to dump me off at some sad little beige house of life?
Or, is this road, this experience, a covert thing life is trying to teach me, that if I stay on it, I will drive past the disappointing beige house and arrive at some temple of happiness and enlightenment?
I don’t know.
And I hope I don’t dream about it tonight.
Until tomorrow, my friends…