Friday, July 27, 2012

Leaving Thailand

It had been almost 2 years since since we landed in Thailand and as wonderful as it was, the time had come to make some decisions whether or not to continue in Thailand or move on. Thailand offered us space and a life style where we didn't have to worry about where our next meal would come from and time with our children, but at the same time we were getting stuck. Europe and America were slowly getting out of our reach. As long as we had no desire to go home we could afford to stay but beyond that we were getting farther and father away. We now only had enough in the bank for the flight out of there. Beyond that we were also pregnant and wondering where and how to have this baby. I had been blessed to have my babies in Ireland with midwives but Thailand was as medicalized as America. So many decisions to make and what would be the right one for our family? Where would we go, Ireland, America? We had no home anywhere. No place to rest our head. We had to be clear and move quickly. So in April, we decided I would buy a one way ticket to America and check out the lay of the land. I had left the States 8 years before,single and now I was a mother of 2 with one on the way. The stakes were different. The pressure more intense. Plus I would have to leave my family for an unknown time. I packed up and in the only way I could go through it went into denial about leaving. By the time I got to the airport I didn't even cry when saying goodbye to my children. I was numb and terrified. So much pressure on me and not a clue as to what was waiting on the other side. I kissed my crying children good-bye trying to sooth them with a lie that I would only be gone a short time, but they knew I was lying but I didn't know what else to say. I felt horrible and yet it felt like the only way we could move on. We couldn't afford to all go and we had really no where to stay. Single I had more of a chance to stay on a couch but as a family of four, I don't know who would have put us up. So I went alone. When I reached Japan I called home desperately wanting to go back to my family but knowing it was too late. My children begged me to come home but how could I explain this was he only way? How could I explain we didn't have enough money and no where to go? They would be safer in Chiang Mai with their father. I would not be able to provide for them. I felt like a failure as a mother and a person. I now thought of all the women I had met over the years who had to leave their families in a other countries to make money. I could not understand how they could leave. I thought they must be so cold and not caring about their little children. But now I began to understand their pain and their shame. I too felt that way, the pain, the shame.but I had no choice, or did I? I arrived in Los angles with 2 large bags and a mission. I had to make this happen. I handed my custom forms to the officer as I was heading out of baggage claim and as he looked at the paper he saw I was a an American citizen and said " welcome home." In a flash I had tears in my eyes. What did that mean welcome home? Where was my home? And if I was home would I be safe. For a moment my childhood welled up inside me and wanted to cry for days, but there was no time. My childhood was over I needed to focus on my children and making them safe. I spent 3 weeks in Los angles and at the end I realized as sunny and mild as it was. This was not our place. I was blessed with friends and family there that welcomed me with open arms but the clock was ticking and my children were father away each minute and I still had no idea how to take care of them. I was lost and worried. My husband suggested I go to NYC. It was the city I had left behind when I got married and now I hoped it would welcome me back. New York had always been my home, the place in my heart but I also knew how expensive it was and although I had lived their for 17 years on and off, I had always just scraped by. Now with a family, no money or health insurance, a baby on the way and an unconventional job the odds were against me, but I had to go. It was the only way.

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