You know the difficult thing, the "fuck this is hard" thing, the painful thing of being a child migrant - I guess, is the idea, the reality really, that you are at home here but you also have a home elsewhere.
The other home doesn't feel as "home" as this home, but it *is* home nonetheless. It's a place that is exactly as you left it some thirty years ago almost - but only in your mind.
That place moves on as you have also moved on but in your heart- in your mind, it stays the same. Good or bad- it stays the same. And because it is immortalised in your thoughts which are a lot more permanent than celluloid but just as fickle you just assume that that other home - over there - will never change.
It can't change because even though it wasn't perfect it was ideal. How could that place ever change? How could the people left behind grow old, weary, sick and then die? That doesn't happen.
You make a home elsewhere, you build a life in your new continent- a place with boundless plains to share and opportunities that are even more borderless. You grow older, you have many successes and even more failures- you have great loves and also disappointments. You study and work- you build a home. You choose a new family. This is now home. Over *there* just exists in your memories, happy memories, it stays ideal for ever.
Until it doesn't.
My aunt died last night and it's saddened me in ways I can't express. Because this doesn't happen- or shouldn't. My aunt, as well as my happy memories of growing up in another continent with a warmer climate, feel a bit like museum pieces. Something that is beautiful and destined (at least in my mind) to be untouched by age or illness or misfortune.
But that's just not true nor is it possible.
She was a magnificent lady that fought the difficulty of being the eldest of ten children born into poverty with grace and hard work. A living example of what humility and dedication can lead you to achieve. Or at least what humility, dedication and hard work can cultivate in the hearts of others.
This is my Tia during a happier time- the wedding of one of her nephews, who also met a tragic death way too early.
Thank you Tia Nubia.
Like the peoples who were her namesake she was proud and in as long as my very own memory allows it - eternal.