What Did You Leave Behind? A Post for the TCK

We’ve been asked where we are from.

We’ve been asked if it’s good to be ‘home.’ 

We’ve been asked what ‘it’ was like ‘over there.’

But have you ever been asked what you left behind? 

I haven’t. Ever. I don’t think my kids have ever been asked either.

But it’s such a good question. Because maybe, just maybe, if we can be honest about what we left behind, we can press forward to what we have now, press forward to what is ahead. So today, I’m asking you. No matter when you left, whether it be two months ago, a year ago, or ten to twenty years – what did you leave behind?

Nina Sichel in a post written for the Morning Zen says this at the end of it:

“Kathleen Gilbert has researched grief among TCKs, and writes, ‘Losses that are not successfully resolved in childhood have an increased likelihood of recurring in adulthood… For TCKs, questions about who they are, what they are, where they are from, what and who they can trust are examples of existential losses with which they must cope. And the way in which they process these losses will change, or may even wait until long after their childhood.’

So when she comes to you, don’t ask her where she’s from, or what’s troubling her. Ask her where she’s lived.
Ask her what she’s left behind. Open doors. And just listen. Give her the time and space and permission she needs to remember and to mourn. She has a story — many stories. And she needs and deserves to be heard, and to be healed, and to be whole.”

So what did you leave behind? May we share, and in sharing, be heard, be healed, be whole.

Blogger’s note: I would love to use some of your responses in a future piece called “The Things We Left Behind.” Would you share and be willing to have your words shared again?