Saturday, November 12, 2016

What's New

So...years have passed since I have written. I am still here in Kuwait; two children have graduated and have gone off to college in the US; one child is at home and in elementary school; and I am still teaching at the university.
I realize now how the US is a different place for my children and how the morphing of their two worlds has informed their opinions on the US to be more objective and less emotion based. I have to say that I have hung on to a nostalgic view that makes the current turn in the US from one of an ethical and loving country, to one being steered by a bigot, extremely hard to reconcile.
I don't know what to think...but it is not the country of an Andy Griffithish flavor anymore. And if I am honest with myself, I need to acknowledge that it was probably not that when I remember it as such for many people even at that time.
And so, I am here with my life in the Middle East and a heart in a US that may soon cease to exist as a space that my heart would recognize. And I have to admit that I have finally settled into a peaceful acceptance and appreciation of my life here. It took a long while.
But I am grateful. 

Thursday, November 10, 2016

I think I Might Be Back

Given the political events in the US right now, I feel compelled to a place of venting and creative outlet. I will be back to let off some tumultuous thoughts...

Saturday, March 22, 2014

Negativity: The Grass Is Always Greener...

So, surprisingly, it is more difficult to be positive when you are surrounded by expats. Always complaining about life here and people etc. Somehow, being away from the US expunged their memories of annoyances that allowed them to leave in the first place.
I am trying to be thankful. It is a country that is full of annoyances, but really, the US is too. I think one of the biggest differences is, in the US, one can remove or distance themselves from the annoyances more easily. That is in part due to the physical and geographical capabilities which are lacking here. So, it's all more in your face. Deal with it.
Islamically speaking, scholars have mused that one of the reasons that the last prophet came to the Arabs/Bedouins was because they were a people with little distraction to take them away from the contemplation of the skies, stars, and nature- the real. And there is a Chinese curse that says "May you live in interesting times." So, perhaps there is an awakening attainable to those who are able, under some stress and/or duress to contemplate human behavior at an arm's length.
I know for me, it has given me the chance to see that while there are a great many differences related to culture, people are still basically the same-good, bad, and ugly. At first you are shocked, then annoyed, then frustrated, then resigned, then accepting of the fact that your interpretation and way of being in the world is simply your own-not necessarily correct or the best, and you find a way to deal and flourish. You have to be that flower or weed, growing from the crack in the city sidewalk.
Seek the sun and you will be nourished.

Saturday, August 03, 2013

What I Have Learned So Far

Looking back, I can see how afraid I was. How worried about my children I was. How filled with angst I was. Standing at another major precipice in my life, I can see things a little differently now. My baby is getting ready to go off to college, and I am still trying to wrap my head around that. How has Kuwait been, then? I thought my eldest would have the hardest time adjusting-that she would hate it with its restrictions and limitations. I was wrong. She is really sad to be leaving to go off to college. She made excellent friends and created a safe and close world to nurture her through her high school years. In a time where her peers in the US were getting into all sorts of troubles, she was able to avoid all of that and focus, well mostly, on herself and school. So I am thankful for that, Kuwait- thank you!

Wednesday, September 07, 2011

Time

What to do about time's evanescent nature? Shall we succumb, give up on attempting to catch its flying coat tails where we might have ridden into tomorrow in comfort, watching the events of the moments play out like a slow-moving dream?
It seems to be that the moments of my life have accelerated to such a point that there is not much room for enjoying the ride anymore. No way to kick back and take in the aroma of the flowers nor the pleasure of a languorous respite. Those days are long gone- misty memories from a childhood spent in boundless hours and days of adventure and happiness.
And so I wonder: do our children, all of our children have any moments like that? Do they have time when there are not responsibilities and deadlines looming? Are there times when they feel free to be themselves without the prying, judging eyes of their peers? Is there space for not caring about what brand of bag, shoes, or clothes that they wear?
I am worried about children in general but my own specifically. I don't know if there is a difference between time here and Kuwait. Do kids in the US have more or less time to live than in Kuwait? There are many more diversions in the US, and so I think that that could serve to either slow down or speed up time. There are more opportunities to have help in your homes and lives here in Kuwait, but does that help or hinder? So I wonder, is it that the measure of time is subjective, leaving some to relish and stretch out into its shadow, while others are spent and breathless in its vanishing vapor?