I wrote a post a couple weeks ago entitled “We are Weird.” Apparently we are weird because somehow that post has disappeared. Toffer used all his internet and computer know-how to try to retrieve said missing post, but to no avail. I really liked the original post and wish it still existed (note to self-back up website posts), but the information it conveyed was important enough that I’m going to write about the same topic and hope it generally conveys the same idea.
I have a feeling when we’re in the US people are going to talk to us, and especially our kids, and think (or possibly even say to someone else) “Wow-they are weird!” They will be correct. We are weird. We’ve come by our weirdness honestly. It’s taken us literally years to develop this level of weirdness, so we might as well let the freak flag fly. The homeschool coordinator at the Christian school here sent out the article I Am a Triangle in the last homeschool newsletter of the year. He knew people would be going off for the summer or leaving for good and thought it would help normalize the experience. The article explains what it’s like for an ex-pat to go back “home” after being overseas for a period of time.
The jist of the article: The home country is Yellow Circle Land. We, as Yellow Circles, leave Yellow Circle Land and go to Blue Square Land. Blue Square Land is very different from Yellow Circle Land. At first Blue Square Land is a difficult and confusing place to live. Over time the Yellow Circles become more and more acculturated to Blue Square Land. Blue Square Land becomes more interesting. Yellow Circles become less yellow and less circle-like. Yellow Circles can’t ever truly be Blue Squares (I’m much too tall!), but Yellow Circle isn’t a good descriptor, either. Over time Yellow Circles become Green Triangles.
We are a family of Green Triangles, all six of us. Some of us became Green Triangles through lots of stress and tears, trial and error, and praying “God don’t let us do something stupid.” A couple were literally born into being Green Triangles. Regardless, we’re all Green Triangles and we’re going back to Yellow Circle Land. The Yellow Circles will likely expect us to still be Yellow Circles. We generally look and talk like Yellow Circles, so we must be Yellow Circles. We aren’t. Our kids especially aren’t. So, that leaves us in an interesting spot.
We know our interactions with some Yellow Circles will be uncomfortable and awkward. We know we’ll have to re-learn, or for our kids-learn for the first time, how to live in Yellow Circle Land. But in everything we do we’ll still be Green Triangles. We don’t really fit in Blue Square Land and we won’t really fit in Yellow Circle Land. We fit everywhere and nowhere all at once. We are weird.
And we are okay with being weird. We actually like being Green Triangles. We know that’s not okay with some people. But we also know some people will thoroughly enjoy our Green Triangle-ness. Those are the people who will welcome us into their lives, laugh and cry and talk with us, and learn to be a little weird like we are.