The problem with going home after a big trip

by Marilia Di Cesare on November 14, 2012

Once you travel far enough to be away for time enough to feel a big change, it´s just hard to go back home. Especially if you started to feel that the new place was home too and that back home is a weird combination of words.

It´s been 4 months since my 5-year old and I are back in Brazil after spending 1,5 years in Costa Rica, and finally I´m starting to feel more like home again.

I´m slowly thinking less obsesively about traveling again. A month ago, I was still checking to go to Costa Rica and Chile and imagining ways to raise the money to leave again.

I kept thinking how from the northeast of Brazil I should get to the Caribbean by sea. And it´s too bad that it´s more expensive to travel by cargo ship  than flying. Basically, I need 1000 dollars a head to fly and would need 1200 dollars (a head) to go by cargo ship and take 12 days more instead.

I found it really hard to adapt back home. Luísa got super attached to me during this transition and I wasn´t having much support to have us appart a few hours a week to have some time for myself. And it was tough to think of not seeing my good friends from Costa Rica anytime soon.

It´s probably having her back at school for 4 hours in the afternoons that made me more relaxed and with time to spend on work and fun on my own.

The problem with going home is that the place we left felt like home too. I miss Costa Rica a lot and still hear once in a while Luísa tell me that she wants to go back there.

I miss her Waldorf kindergarten, but luckly, Luísa has been really enjoying her local kindergarten, always ready to go there without complainning and coming back home singing happily.

I also got used to making new friends on the road and found it difficult to make new friends in a place where I already know a lot of the people, even though I am  close to a few of them. Going back to things as they were is quite strange.

But after a coupple of months feeling torn appart about where to be and live, I decided to put my thoughts and energy in the new-old place of mine. I managed to make new friends and make plans for work in the high season of my touristy town. Luckily we have a new neighboor that has a horse (with Luísa  in the picture in our yard).

I was frustrated that I had to stop the Salsa classes in Costa Rica I found before leaving, but now the dancing gap has been fully replaced with hip hop classes and surf more often.

So, the problem with going home was about not accepting the change I had decided for myself. But now, I am fully commited to make our old place a new place (growing my own food is definitely a big advantage of being in one place still and quit the moving around) and for now, Costa Rica will remain as place to visit when the right time comes.

{ 4 comments… read them below or add one }

Kelly November 15, 2012 at 1:26 pm

That’s awesome, Marilia, I was just thinking about you and wondering how settling back in has been going. I always thought the “reverse culture shock” is the hardest! It sounds like you have some amazing things going! I would like to come visit sometime. Kelly


Marilia November 15, 2012 at 5:57 pm

Nice Kelly, it would be great having you around, just let me know when.


Leanne November 21, 2012 at 12:44 am

Hola…just read your last post on your blog. Adapting is difficult and I felt much the same when I was back in Vermont. There’s something about the Caribbean that’s so hard to’s like a life out of life and yes, the interactions between friends here is incredible. While in Vermont I felt at distance with people, mostly beacuase they all drove around in cars and you don’t really get the chance to interact as you do here. Here, you can visit with 20 people on any given day at any given moment. The pace is such that people are available.

What did help me connect when I was home was when I began to realize how good many of my friends really were. My respect for them and for what they were doing assisted in me changing my attitude and then I came to really value these folks. I’ve learned so much from my travel.

Now I am back in CR and yes it is wonderful. Many places offer many differant things. When we look for the positives in wherever we are we can find peace and resolutoin. Costa Rica will be here should you decide to visit. I am sure you are missed as your friendly way never went un-noticed.

Peace to you and that sweet little girl!




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