Graduation Gifts for Your TCK

Every where I look I see graduations. Cambridge and Boston are alive with the activity and color of students who have finished their college or graduate school education. From the bright red gowns of Boston University to the maroon gowns of Harvard, you can't escape this season. And neither can your third culture kid who … Continue reading Graduation Gifts for Your TCK

Like the Seasons….

Like seasons and birthdays, our comings and goings were a normal part of our lives. When we reached adulthood, we would meet others who had never moved and we would be amazed. On the surface, we felt arrogant - "look at us, we've been everywhere" was our silent thought that shouted loudly in our attitudes. … Continue reading Like the Seasons….

Home is Not an Answer to a Question

"Home is not an answer to a question. It is my grandmother’s front porch where I first saw how dark the night was supposed to be. It is the swimming pool in our first apartment complex in Portland where I learned to see without looking, underwater with my eyes closed like the mermaid I knew … Continue reading Home is Not an Answer to a Question

No Better Place Than This…

"Third culture kids, immigrants, refugees, foreigners." "We find each other in unlikely spaces. In the shared experience of other, we find belonging and rest, whether in a short ride to an airport or a long-distance phone conversation. These moments of connection seem to come at the right time, sustaining us until the next encounter, preventing us from … Continue reading No Better Place Than This…

Normalizing Departure

"...but we also knew what it was like to feel temporary, to keep your eye on the clock, to normalise the inevitability of departure so completely that you didn’t think about it, even though you always thought about it." It was six years ago when my mom told me that from age 6 through age … Continue reading Normalizing Departure

Advent Reflection – Silence and Liminal Spaces

When I wake in the early morning I am always struck that our home is silent. There are no voices raised in conversation; no arguments, no agreements. There is no music, no sound of chopping or mixing from the kitchen, no sound of running water. Of course if I really listen I hear noise from … Continue reading Advent Reflection – Silence and Liminal Spaces

Culture Shock: When Your Soul Takes Longer to Arrive

First you arrive physically and you are very tired. But only after a while, your soul gets here, too. Because the plane is very fast, but the soul takes longer to arrive.* On Friday, my youngest son arrived home after two months of travel. He experienced hospitality, adventure, and food across Albania, Greece, Bulgaria, and … Continue reading Culture Shock: When Your Soul Takes Longer to Arrive

A Life Overseas -Thoughts on Entry, Reentry, and Third Culture Kids

Every summer I begin thinking about change and transition, about reentry and culture shock. With the first warm breezes of the season, I am transported to places and times where this was my reality. And I begin to hear stories from others who are going through these transitions. The stories are told in photographs and … Continue reading A Life Overseas -Thoughts on Entry, Reentry, and Third Culture Kids

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

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

New Lives and Portable Memories

Every time I leave home, I'm struck by the fact that I have that choice. I'm not being forced out by violence, persecution, or a crooked landlord.  I choose when to go. I choose how to go.  I choose what to take.  An article in the NY Times called "In a Refugee’s Bags, Memories of … Continue reading New Lives and Portable Memories

The Grand Unraveling

For several months I had been calling Trump’s impending presidency The Grand Unraveling. He made campaign promises that seemed horrifying to me, he boldly made declarations of things he would do, things he would undo. During those campaigning days things seemed bleak, ominous even, but most of the time I assumed he was using loud … Continue reading The Grand Unraveling

The Travelers

“Time was passing like a hand waving from a train I wanted to be on. I hope you never have to think about anything as much as I think about you.” ― Jonathan Safran Foer The picture of the sculpture is so remarkable I think that it cannot be real. It must be a photograph, digitally … Continue reading The Travelers

A Life Overseas – To the One Who is Left Behind

Hi Readers! I was at A Life Overseas yesterday writing to those who are left behind. You may have already seen a first version of this post a couple of years ago, but if not I would love it if you joined me! "You can kiss your family and friends good-bye and put miles between … Continue reading A Life Overseas – To the One Who is Left Behind

A Short Correspondence on the Issue of Feeling Trapped

Dear Robynn, I enjoyed your "Friday's with Robynn" post (A Hidden Pearl. January 29,2016). It really resonated with me, so thank you for posting it. It was very thought provoking for me. Earlier this year I experienced a very similar feeling to the one you had having returned from Thailand. My friends and I arrived … Continue reading A Short Correspondence on the Issue of Feeling Trapped

Get a Life

"Oh, for God's sake...get a life, will you?"--William Shatner   Connor left nearly a month ago to return to the University of British Columbia. As he and Lowell pulled away from the house I felt the bottle of grief shaken within me lose its scarcely screwed on lid. Before I knew it I was drenched, … Continue reading Get a Life

This is my Body–A Repost

when Jesus proclaimed, “This is my body, broken for you,” it makes me wonder if in some sense Jesus himself had to come to grips with his own body and its impending brokenness. He was about to endure the profound breaking of his own body. He leans into it and he accepts it. That has implications for me accepting my own body and my own brokenness.