I am still avoiding who I used to be. And I am in denial of who I have become.
I’m currently reading Americanah by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie. I started reading it almost three months ago, and I’ve had to put it down so many times because it reminds me so much of myself and how I used to be when I first left home, how I am. For the longest time, before this novel, before I found that the words that I used to describe myself had already been strung together by someone else, I have felt a little empty. It’s not a gaping hole, like I’m used to. I would have wished for someone to arrive and fill up. It is a hollowness that I could not get identify.
There are whole parts of myself, of who I am, that people here will never recognize. And sometimes, I fantasize about going home and feeling whole again. But even then, home has grown just as much as I have, we may no longer fit together.
I am a Burmese South African living in Canada and there will always be parts of me that are unsatisfied–hungry. I’m waiting for my Africa to return to me, but it’s different here. You cannot be African if you are not black. But even then, the South Africa I grew up in was delicate and golden, I experienced something entirely unique and inexplainable. One of those “you need to have been there to get it” things.
I feel less like myself and less of myself every day. I want to fight losing these parts of who I am but I’m not sure I can. I’m not sure if I’m really worth it.