I think I'm finally starting to feel like myself again. For sure I'm still in transition, but today I had an experience that told me I may actually be returning to normal. I was on campus to study all afternoon and into the evening. At about 5:30 I wondered up to the commuter lounge where I'd left my “lunch” in the fridge. After a few minutes two ladies came in working on a text together. One was reading aloud while the other made coffee. Tomorrow is the last day of finals for regular day students. We exchanged niceties and they carried on with their work and I with my supper.
As I was leaving I decided to test my cultural guessing abilities. (I think I'm rather good at it when it comes to Africans. Though, I made a mistake earlier on campus today mistaking a tall and very dark man dressed in a tie dye outfit for a Sudanese when he was actually Ethiopian.) When I got up to go, I about how their topic of discussion seemed interesting but I had to get back to the library. Though I could her no accent I thought the one gal was Ethiopian based on her features. I asked her name and it sounded Ethiopian, so I offered, “Are you from Ethiopia?”
“Yes! How did you know?” I explained that I had lived in East Africa and our bond with cemented. She pointed in the direction of her office and told me to come sometime and see her. I smiled as I left thinking of the prospect of a new African friend.
But the real joy of the story is that I felt that I was totally uninhibited, like I used to feel. I felt like myself, not like I'm on hold and I need to figure out how to navigate through this thing called life back in America. I was so happy that to finally feel like it was me inside again, and not some stranger I'm getting used to being.
Thank you, God, for a little piece of normalcy for a change.