Why It Will Never Be The Same

denramonal
Posted December 13, 2019 from Philippines

Maybe we go back because we have left a piece of ourselves in that place. Maybe we go back because we have the longing to reclaim past glories presented to us. Maybe we go back because we know that change has rolled in dynamic surges that left us gasping and we are still unwilling to roll with it. Maybe we go back because we take on the former roles of friends who first led us to that place. Maybe. Whether your reasons fall under any of the ones narrated, trust me when I say that you will never fully grasp the goals you have initially set before embarking on the journey back to a familiar place. I will tell you why.

Because you are not who you were four years or four months ago.

When I moved overseas many years ago, I was running away from a heartbreak caused by a halted four-year relationship that sent me reeling. I decided to drop everything – quit my job which offered me financial security, sold my house, and was set on relocating abroad. I was not going to look back, I clearly remembered saying and at that time, Thailand offered me the ‘different’ that I was searching for. I wanted to be in a place that was so strange from what I was used to and I just fell in love with the country. I thought then, “This is what I need. This is the 'strange' that I was hoping for. This is a good strange. So I stayed, left for a few months, then came back, left again, and came back for the nth time. It was a love-hate relationship but there was always an invincible pull; and every time I was back, it was different. Every time I brought a different perspective, a different language, a different cultural influence, and a different experience. I was older, wiser in a different sense, with a whole new collection of certainties.

Because the place will change.

Just as you will change, the place that took your breath away will also change – most of the time to pave way for progress. Yes, looks like all course of action is going in this direction. Airports will be expanded, roads will be widened, buildings will be constructed, towers will not be as bright, new wall murals will sprout like weeds, prices will go higher, old special nooks will be replaced, the culture you knew will give way to a more modern or artistic one. The truth is, only its name will remain the same, everything else will have a different face. Maybe it will have the semblance of the place that was first introduced to you but that is all it will be a semblance.  But if you are patient, if you stay longer, you will be given the chance to see how the colors will change right in front of your eyes (something that you may have not been able to do because you were in such a hurry).

Because you will meet different people.

On your first visit, you may have been with friends or family and together you created memories; but this may not be the case on your next visits. Maybe you will travel alone the next time and you will befriend strangers who will share a different perspective. They will sell an entirely new package of life and it will alter how you perceived the place. They will teach you how to dance just by using your hands, to kiss differently, to talk in a different manner, to understand political views, to appreciate foreign books and movies, to work in such a way that the cavewoman in you will be challenged to leave. And you – because you have exposed yourself so generously to them – will learn so much that you will be in constant awe, that your amazement and irritation will be at each others’ throats 24/7. You will learn to slow down because it is only right to give time due credit, to laugh so hard that everyone around you will laugh along, to choose which ideas you will keep, to walk away from situations that you do not want to end up in, to grow a different set of wings so you will fly with grace and do away with the grief so likened to that of a child.

Because age will tell you otherwise.

We do not just age in an intangible way, we also have our physical form as proof of how our preferences will change as years passed. Oh we all go through the process of becoming older – wrinkles will start appearing, hair strands will turn gray, bones will become brittle, allergies will start developing, some will lose weight, some will gain weight, getting sick will be more frequent, etc. It will be a struggle and you will realize that what you liked before will not give you the same highs. You might not like partying all night anymore, roaming around via walking might be limited to a few hours or might require an occasional break every now and then, trying thrill-induced activities may trigger that heart attack or may not be child or family-friendly. You opt for a different choice not because of the limitations of your physique but because your choices evolved with the changes in your body.

Maybe you will disagree. Maybe you have a different explanation, but if you happen to be on the same boat that I am in right now just remember that it is crucial to look at a place with a new set of eyes. This way, your nostalgia, boundaries, or change of perspective will not result in an aversion. Just as you have to appreciate a person for who he or she is now, you will also need to do so for all the places that you will revisit.

(Article from my blog, written on the year my father died - 2015)

Comments 14

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Anita Shrestha
Dec 14, 2019
Dec 14, 2019

Thank you for sharing

denramonal
Dec 14, 2019
Dec 14, 2019

No problem, Anita.

Jill Langhus
Dec 14, 2019
Dec 14, 2019

Hi Denramonal,

How are you doing? Thanks for sharing your interesting, introspective and thought-provoking post. I love to travel and see different places and experience new things so I'm really wondering how my perspective has changed and will change when I go back to places that I have been before now.

I hope you're doing well and having a great weekend, dear!

denramonal
Dec 14, 2019
Dec 14, 2019

Oh yes, I am curious too if you go through the same process. Tell me once you revisit a place. :) It is always a pleasure to share these kinds of ideas to anyone willing to read about them. Thank you for reading. Have a great weekend as well.

Jill Langhus
Dec 14, 2019
Dec 14, 2019

Okay. I hope I remember:-) Ha.

You're welcome, dear.

Thank you!

XX

maeann
Dec 14, 2019
Dec 14, 2019

Hi Den,

I can relate to the part of the change of the physical form. How I wish our age stopped to what we preferred too. But this is life. This is our destiny and we need to face it..... makes me think now.... Life is so sweet yet so fragile.

denramonal
Dec 14, 2019
Dec 14, 2019

I'm glad that you were able to relate with the article and yes this is life. It is beautiful in whatever way. :)

maeann
Dec 15, 2019
Dec 15, 2019

I agree. Thank you for sharing your story, I am sure there's more :) see you on World Pulse PH fb group.

Anita Shrestha
Dec 14, 2019
Dec 14, 2019

Thank you for sharing

lizzymark
Dec 15, 2019
Dec 15, 2019

Hi sis,I just wonder if I'll love to take those long hours journey again in other to see the old places again,or even meet friends whom I've left and moved on. But I know that in whoever I have become today and where I am those places and people played vital roles. So it will be fun really to try going again. Thank you for shearing.

denramonal
Dec 16, 2019
Dec 16, 2019

I hope that when you decide to go back, you can share with us your experience too. :) It was my pleasure to share my experience and I am glad you enjoyed reading.

Karen Quiñones-Axalan
Dec 15, 2019
Dec 15, 2019

Hello, sis Den,

You are truly a gifted writer. Thank you for bringing us to your thought process on how you reflect on life journeys and circumstances. Your mind must be a beautiful world on its own. Thank you for sharing this with us.

denramonal
Dec 16, 2019
Dec 16, 2019

Oh thanks, sis Karen. I think it's about time I invite people to join the party in my head. :)

Karen Quiñones-Axalan
Dec 17, 2019
Dec 17, 2019

You're welcome, dear. Yes, thanks for the invitation. It's a sign of generosity because we learn with you as we read. Yay!