i leave my country in seven days, and i feel strangely calm

As the title says, I’m leaving home in seven days to go into the senior year of high school.

If you’ve been following along this little blog for a while, you’d know that I’ve been studying in the States for the past three years of high school. If you’ve been following this blog for a long time, you probably be annoyed with how much I talk about it (Believe me, I’m slightly annoyed too).

As I was saying, for the previous three years, leaving home for a whole half-a-year had been unbearable. I’d wake up at around six, knowing that it was the last day I’m spending at home, groan, and be sad all through the car ride. I always regret choosing to leave the most the day I’m leaving.

Don’t get me wrong, every time I do go back to school, I’m extremely glad to see my friends. But that’s a whole other topic.

Yesterday, as I was sitting with my mom eating snacks, we started talking about my leaving for the States in seven days (six now, actually), and for the first time, I felt strangely at peace. Maybe I won’t feel this way in six days when I wake up again at six in the morning. Maybe the feeling was temporary. But maybe it’s because I recently turned eighteen, and the feeling of displacement has finally caught up with me and raced forward. Maybe after three years, I’ve accepted that this is my life now, going back and forth between two continents.

(Now, I’d never claim specialness in my situation, since many travel this way. My friends at school for instance. They all seem so composed and never really missing home. But then again, I never really reveal that part of myself much either.)

I would like to venture away from this topic for a second, and describe a particular memory I have that might or might not relate back to it. Sometimes when writing these posts I don’t even know what I think until I write them.

me too michael. me too.

I was walking in (I think) the Beijing International Airport. Because of its impressive size, we have to take a little train from one terminal to another. And I was on that little train, swaying along with the rest of the passengers, when I felt nothing. Absolutely nothing. Then something again. For a second, I was watching myself in a movie. I was one of those people who travel, who drift like dust, who have accepted that they belong not with one place, but with multiple. It was strange, somewhat peaceful, somewhat terrifying. In my life (or as much of my life as I can remember), I’ve only had two (sort of) out-of-body experiences. One was the train, the other was this.

I sometimes wonder if I’ve left home too early. If I’ve abandoned my family for these past three years. The time difference makes it difficult to find a time to talk, after all. But I look back and I wonder whether I would’ve changed these three years, would’ve rather stayed in China where my future looked bleak. And I think the answer is no.

And maybe that’s why that I felt peaceful yesterday. Maybe I’ve accepted that things really have a way of working out just fine (or maybe I’m naïve for thinking this). Maybe it was the snacks, and the fact that my mom was there with me. Maybe it was because I was sick yesterday and simply felt tired.

Who knows?

(I’m sorry for using an entire line break for these two words, but it does look a lot better by themselves.)

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