I Brought Myself to South America

What is it like to live in a different culture, a different country? It is intriguing to want to know. The writer Alain de Botton very eloquently put it in his book The Art of Travel

“It is easy for us to forget ourselves when we contemplate pictorial and verbal descriptions of places. At home, as my eyes had panned over photographs of Barbados, there were no reminders that those eyes were intimately tied to a body and mind that would travel with me wherever I went and that might, over time, assert their presence in ways that would threaten or even negate the purpose of what the eyes had come there to see.”

Grant read this book when we first moved here and imparted much of its wisdom to me. To put it simply, we bring ourselves wherever we go. This is true in any situation of life including marriage. Whatever journey we embark on, we will find ourselves at its destination. We are the same person, and it is our personal responsibility to be challenged and be open to growth. It would be insane to expect a different person to meet you there. This is what it is like living in a different country or culture, being met with “you” in the culture.
It is why we need to continuously challenge ourselves to grow and not rely on outside circumstances or people to change the parts of us we want different. When we do this, life is more welcoming and it isn’t threatening. Be vulnerable, be bold, because then you can truly grow and appreciate the journey.

(feature photo above is a view from our window)


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