On Coming Home

Flight from Melbourne to Sydney — oh how I love flying

After living far away for two years on my own, I thought it would make me feel excited when it was time for me to come home. To see family and friends, return to my comfort zone, and experience the familiarity — but it turned out to be more complicated than that.

About two weeks ago, after I had submitted my thesis, I began preparing for my repatriation flight — it was a nightmare. I need to work out the flight schedule, send stuff via cargo(reminder: I haven’t gone home for two years, so it’s a lot!), figure out the PCR test schedule, do some paperwork, finding a suitable hotel for my quarantine, not to mention the cost I have to bear for all of that — In short, it is stressful.

But then I took a step back and realised another element underlying the stress: the feeling of uncertainties of going home.

Postgraduate study has always been my dream since I was in high school, but at the same time, it is also an “escape” for me. Two years in Australia has been an interesting journey. As I had to build my life from scratch, I realised that I needed to rely on myself at the end of the day. For the past few years, I have been more attuned to my inward self — of who I am and what I want to be — as a person. I realised that I like doing my own thing when I am on my own; in short, I don’t settle.

Hence, coming home means leaving that “good chapter” behind. Sure, there is no guarantee that the next chapter won’t be as good as this one, but it is also uncertain — and facing that is not easy. There were periods when I felt like I really wanted to come home. When I felt homesick or when I knew some people were waiting for my return (please come home used to be my favourite line). But it was temporary, and it was no longer there.

Yesterday, I read one of my friends’ posting where he bid farewell to his friend who is going home, and one line struck me hard:

“… they will feel the strangeness of returning to a place that isn’t quite how you left it. The strangeness of being able to see how much you aren’t quite how you left either”.

I had always known that things wouldn’t be the same as when I left it. I know that things will feel familiar yet unfamiliar. The streets which I haven’t passed by, stories that I haven’t heard of, or day-to-day life that I haven’t experienced in two years. Home might not be as quite the same as I thought it would be.

For two years, the thought of going home is to return to the life I used to have. But now I realised that there’s no such thing as “old life”. Just like how I have changed as a person, so did the idea of an ideal life that I have in mind. It means I need to rebuild my life according to that new concept. It is uncertain if I have the capacity to do so, let alone to achieve it. And to be frank, I am not ready.

Yet, life is about moving on. So ready or not, I am coming home.

--

--

--

Sometimes I find solace in words when I’m not too busy fighting my own thoughts.

Love podcasts or audiobooks? Learn on the go with our new app.

Recommended from Medium

How To Take A Road Trip During a Pandemic

What is Conscious Travel?

My father used to go by Juan in Guatemala.

Ikan Dewa: the Sundanese ‘Fish of the Gods’

To achieve success, you should study in the US rather than study in Europe.

A new chapter, 2.

The Magic Mushrooms of Lamas, Tarapoto, Peru

Get the Medium app

A button that says 'Download on the App Store', and if clicked it will lead you to the iOS App store
A button that says 'Get it on, Google Play', and if clicked it will lead you to the Google Play store
Maya

Maya

Sometimes I find solace in words when I’m not too busy fighting my own thoughts.

More from Medium

Voilà, here I am, you’re welcome.

How a unique insight into ‘mind’ games, helps to maintain the right mindset - Andy Borg

A Beaten and Burnt 6 Year Old or a Sexually Molested Year Old?

It’s Magic

A great story of great product in news!!