“This is My Fate” – A Lesson in Cultural Humility

As soon as the angry words came out of my mouth, I regretted them. I was speaking to Rehmet, the woman who helped me care for my kids and my home. She was a Punjabi woman, uneducated, illiterate, with a smile that stretched across a beautiful, weathered face and a personality as big as her … Continue reading “This is My Fate” – A Lesson in Cultural Humility

Where Our Experiences Find Life

My nephew, Tim, and his wife and baby are moving. They have been living in Mexico for the past two years, and their  time has come to an end.  When they joined the Foreign Service, they knew that theirs would be a life of hellos and goodbyes; that boxes and moving trucks would periodically turn … Continue reading Where Our Experiences Find Life

Keep the Lego! (and other thoughts from adult TCKs)

Each year, I pick some TCK quotes to pass on to parents. Some of the quotes are poignant, some funny, but most of all - I think they are wise. The third culture kid is not a single person with one viewpoint; instead it is kids all over the world, each with their unique story … Continue reading Keep the Lego! (and other thoughts from adult TCKs)

An Excerpt on Friendship & Loss

Friends, there is a giveaway of Passages Through Pakistan on Goodreads! It ends on June 7th, and two books will be given away. In honor of the giveaway, I've included an excerpt from the book on friendship and loss. I hope you enjoy! Also - the electronic version of Passages will be released on June … Continue reading An Excerpt on Friendship & Loss

My Ramadan Baby

I remember the day like it was yesterday. The Islamabad sun, hot and bright, burned down on my mom and I as we walked to the hospital with my first-born - Annie - in a stroller. It was May of 1987 and it was Ramadan, only a couple of days before the huge Eid celebration … Continue reading My Ramadan Baby

A Life Overseas – On Home and Keeping Place

"Home is a human place. Instinctively, each of us, male and female, knows the sound of its welcome - and the joy of our possible return. Readers - Today I am at A Life Overseas talking with Jen Pollock Michel about her newly released book Keeping Place - Reflections on the Meaning of Home. Will … Continue reading A Life Overseas – On Home and Keeping Place

When You Can’t Settle in the Place You Call Home

A couple of years ago, an anonymous letter came to Communicating Across Boundaries. The letter began like this: It just doesn't go away.... The writer goes on to speak of an unsettled weariness and dissatisfaction, a boredom with life in one's passport country. "I’m afraid I may have a chronic case of ennui. Most of … Continue reading When You Can’t Settle in the Place You Call Home

Moving Manifesto

Note: This essay is from Between Worlds: Essays on Culture and Belonging available here. April is the time when it hits many people that their reality is changing and a move is inevitable. This post is dedicated to all those who will be moving in the next 3 months. Be ruthless - check Don't go into memory … Continue reading Moving Manifesto

The Gift of the In Between 

I get up early to write. The early morning sky is grey, not even a hint of sunlight. A mix of snow and rain is in the forecast.  I get up early to write; instead I find myself reading. Reading a poignant essay; an essay made of maps and grief, lost things and home. It's … Continue reading The Gift of the In Between 

On Being Local – A Guest Post

I'm delighted to welcome Michael Pollock to my blog today! Michael is a fellow ATCK, but he's also a friend and someone who "gets" this journey. Read more about Michael at the end of the post.   ON BEING LOCAL I was fascinated by Taiye Selassi’s Ted talk, “Don’t ask me where I’m from, ask … Continue reading On Being Local – A Guest Post

Full Heart at #FIGT17NL 

I'm sitting in bed in a modern hotel room in  The Hague - that famous city known for tribunals and the Peace Palace.  There is much I could write about this city from the small amount of time I've been here, but it is nothing compared to what I could write about the people and … Continue reading Full Heart at #FIGT17NL 

Finding Your Niche at #FIGT17NL

In 2014, I hosted a blog series called "Finding Your Niche: Using a Multicultural Past to Create a Meaningful Present." The result was a set of essays from adult third culture kids, each different and each exploring what it was to find a niche as an adult. Writers talked about the jobs and communities they had … Continue reading Finding Your Niche at #FIGT17NL

Observations and Thoughts on the Third Culture Kid Perspective 

I just returned from a two-week trip to Cairo, Egypt where I was invited to speak at five different schools, to five different parent groups, and be a speaker at a youth retreat. I found the research specific literature to be invaluable in assisting me in my talks. Here are some of my observations from the … Continue reading Observations and Thoughts on the Third Culture Kid Perspective 

Song of Homesickness

"There are many more sushi bars in Santa Barbara than I ever see in Kyoto, and my friends are all talking there of giving things up, going back to the country, finding a self that my Japanese neighbors have never had a chance to lose. It’s a song of homesickness they’re singing silently, perhaps, and … Continue reading Song of Homesickness

Always Too Foreign

On Mother's Day, my youngest son enters the house. "Today is a good day to read Between Worlds" he says. I look at him puzzled. "Why's that?" The answer comes quickly: "Because I'm your son." For better or for worse, we who have lived between pass on the in between to our children. We who are "always … Continue reading Always Too Foreign