I take at least part of the credit, me being a holy mess of emotion, angst, and overworked-ness half the time she's home. After one of our recent bouts of mother-daughter acrimony, she'd finally had enough.
She cried about having few friends and how there's always dust in the corners and how her school was so small and how she had to do art class with first graders. How she's missing out. How the milk tastes bad and the cheese in the burritos at school is like plastic, and how she has few friends. How she doesn't want to stay longer than we first discussed. All while sniveling and her face turning red with preteen fervor.
That last one, as it turns out, is surprising, because i think the clouds have parted on my own sense of seclusion and culture shock. I was just beginning to really like it here. Sure, living in a corner house on the first paved street you hit between the lakeside barrios and the town center means this house does get dusty fast, and loud as hell -- and that was a sticking point for most of the first month or two living here.
Hell, right now the sounds of a steel drum band three blocks away could just as soon be across the street. Nicas, like many Latinos, like it loud. Me, i've taken to relishing swimming back stroke in my pool, looking up at high-flying birds while my ears are covered with sweet blue water.
Silence, looking up.
|Getting out and swimming in volcanoes|
But her -- how should i tell her that this will pass? That seven months from now she'll probably be hysterical at leaving this place behind? I tried to explain the culture shock graph, but not sure it hit home.
I'm also trying the "get out more" approach. She does love the act of moving from point A to B and seeing what's out there -- she told me so on the bus to Managua last week.
We were sitting -- gloriously sitting instead of being crammed in the aisle of a roaring chicken bus -- looking out the window at the city creeping in closer.
"Mom," she said, "Do you like traveling?"
"Yeah baby, i like traveling. That's why we're here. Do you like traveling?"
(Unabashed grin) "Yes!"
So obviously she will get through this, and soon enough she too will be looking up.