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Can a Person be Misplaced?


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I went to the United States recently and immediately found myself ‘misplaced’. I gave my debit card to the cashiers when checking out a purchase, while they looked at me as if I was from another planet. I took so long to pump my gas another guy paid for my pump and I had to go inside with him to straighten out the purchase. I found myself saying good day to everyone when I entered an office to not even get a response, I was not fitting into the world over there! I am now officially a misplaced person in the United States!

I moved to Colombia in 2011 with no knowledge of Spanish and a dream. My life is my truth now, but apparently I am not good with the evolution that continues to overtake society in the United States. I can now speak Spanish but I cannot understand life as I used to know it anymore. There are too many uncertainties and no guarantees. I found myself constantly missing my glass walled bedroom in Colombia and Netflix. I hated the constant barrage of negativity spewed out from the television, I noticed that a lot of homes I visited were dark and without light streaming inside their homes. I need light! I have my doors open and a breeze flowing constantly at Villa Migelita. People who are part of my family disappointed me. It seems that no one is more important than their own self.  A member of my family asked me whom I was leaving Villa Migelita to! When I answered honestly, insults and really bad words said like they were a normal part of every day conversation! It seems as if polite society is no longer in existence.

snowman
Snow for a part of the day in Newport, RI

I realize I have become mentally strong. Even though there were horrible things happening while I visited the USA, I was able to keep focused on what I have accomplished and will continue to carry out. I did have some wonderful moments while visiting and I enjoyed them so much. Making a snowman with my granddaughter was so special. Seeing my best friend and laughing so hard I cried was wonderful. Making memories with my granddaughter is always lovely, but the other stuff…that stuff she has to endure while I live my life unable to do anything is truly heartbreaking. I have come to realize you can only try your best in life and after that you have no control. Mental strength is knowing you can manage your emotions while others cannot. Mental strength is speaking up against things you see that are wrong, even when it disturbs others peace. Mental strength is revoking all that is wrong and saying so.  I have that now. I didn’t when I moved to Colombia.

So now I am back in my home in the mountains of Colombia, enjoying my life and my solitude. I have much I wish I could change about what I experienced while in the United States recently. I can’t so I accept that. I know what matters and what does not. I have made a bit of a dent in some problems but not a great one. I have made new friends and have shown that I am a person of integrity to many. I practice gratitude every single day. I am mindful of what matters and what doesn’t. If I have learned anything from my visit to the USA is that I have truly become a different person than I was when I left and moved to Colombia. I have detached myself from taking things personally and I say what I mean. I focus on the positive, even if the best does not always happen. That is who I am now. If that makes me displaced then I am doing something right.

 

 

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Author:

I am an American who moved to Colombia to find peace after the devastating loss of my daughter. I bought and renovated a Villa, am learning Spanish, and writing as catharsis. This blog will be like my book with chapters. Each blog will be about my life and adventures. I hope you will enjoy the many new discoveries I am making every day about myself and another culture.

15 thoughts on “Can a Person be Misplaced?

  1. Thank you Michelle for sharing this message today. It resonates so much with me. (Forgive my mistakes in this post. English is not my first language.) I hope you remember me. I am the one who last Easter wanted to come to Villa Migelita with her father and family and in the end we had to cancel our visit. I was in Cali then, now I am in Bogota. I am divorced and living with my five-year-old girl. Her father is a bad tempered person and he lives in Australia. My daughter and me came to Colombia 6 months ago and I have become also a different person since I came here. Today I realized I have regained my strength to speak out the things that are wrong to the people who make them wrong. I was so weak when I lived with him. He came to Colombia to visit our daughter three days ago and today he asked me to spend some time together the three of us. It only took half an hour for him to show his temper again once things didn’t go “right”. He accidentally scratched the car and then he lost the ticket to get out of the parking, immediately started to swear and slam doors and talk angrily to me as if it was my fault. When he dropped me off I told him to look at himself and think if he was a good example for his daughter. Then once I was home I sent him an email asking him not to ask me to see him again or call me. He came to see our daughter, not me. I don’t need to be contaminated again 🙂

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    1. Yes we always have control over whom we allow in our life. I took control over that while in the States. I will not allow negativity in my life anymore. It seems people closest to us feel they can do and say what they want. I am happy you have come to that realization.

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  2. Hi Michele, Wow this writing really is interesting Karma for me, I just spent 3 hours at a state work connection office taking a class they recommended on how to get hired and resume sending through the internet which is the only way now they are hiring and if you get further with a possible interview how to be a successful candidate. Really after the group class I got in my car to drive home and cried. I too have lived outside of the USA and last year in my native Boston visited after nearly 5 years in which I stayed with my very well to do sister got an extremely cold welcome. When I think of all the good I did in my life I feel like today it means nothing. All the places I visited all the people I ever met, and me not being well to do like the rest of my family, I not only feel displaced but lost. I can’t seem to figure out how to go forward in my own country. I grew up in Boston and live in Las Vegas and you want to talk about un-friendly!!! Thank you for sending a special message to peeps like me. God bless you much!

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    1. Denise, I am sorry you have these problems…it does seem many problems come from those closest to us and around us. You just keep striving and working hard like you do. Keep your positive thoughts inside for a good job and it will happen. xo

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  3. I’ve never been to another country, but I love seeing your posts. One day, I want to be somewhere warm & welcoming. I had the thought in my mind that I could not do it until I learn Spanish.. but you left and went to Columbia without knowing Spanish? How did you learn?
    If you blog regularly I will be following it! I love when you share your experiences. Especially this one. I often feel “misplaced”, and I’m sure part of it is because of my shyness, but so many focus on the negative or are just plain rude.
    I don’t feel like the time is right now, as I am the breadwinner and my girls are so small, but one day I want to be somewhere like Columbia, specifically Villa Megilita, in my retirement (OR EARLIER!) and enjoy life even more than I already do!

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    1. Hi Jamye, I learned through immersion and it was not easy. I am still learning. They say five years is the start of fluency and that is true. It has been a long road of studying and speaking to others in Spanish. I think anyone who comes to another country should know a bit more than I did, but hey we all have our own journey and that was mine…LOL. I wish you the best in your life and your dreams..being that I have made mine come true I believe everyone can do what they need to do to make a dream happen…just be goal oriented and persistent. It sounds to me like you are doing just fine. Michele

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  4. I really can relate and truly enjoy your posts. I do hope that one day your beautiful daughter and son can come to you to experience your life and new home. There is little more that you can you do except exactly what you are doing to spend time with her and hopefully with your son as well. One day, they will be able to make decisions for themselves. One can only lead by example.

    I live in Miami and I too feel displaced. I find a daily harsh reality of how much negative energy there is in so many people. So many are callused. Yet, I find myself centered and very aware (most of the time). Therefore, I give perfect strangers, every single day, a portion of kindness that is unexpected. I am very friendly with everyone, expected or not. Once I do those things, people wake up from the stupor. Then you see a glimmer of kindness or courtesy and even genuine caring. The biggest lesson and most fulfilling for me is to have compassion for others. Just now I am dealing with someone who is deeply negative, mentally ill, and very selfish. I try very hard to see how unhappy and uncentered that person is. How difficult it is for that person to be a better person. How needy. However, He who knows better does better. I help her in spurts as I cannot do more for it affects my energy, but I have compassion for her incapabilities. So that is how I see it.

    Thank you for your lovely posts Michelle.

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    1. Thank you Marlene, I agree that giving out kindness begets kindness. I know how lovely you are and your energy is great. It is very hard for us when someone close to us brings negativity into our lives. I found that too often this last visit. I wanted to see more people but was overwhelmed by drama and problems of which I wanted no part. My grand is always going to be a special part of my life, I just feel really bad when things happen that she will be affected by. I do what I can and I spend as much time as I can with her.

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  5. 💕 proud of you, Michelle. You know what you want. You deserve to be happy. I see your very happy in Colombia. I really need to come and visit villa. Going to try this time after I give birth to my new bundle in July. Keep your heads up and be you, yourself 🙂 oxo

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    1. So excited for your new baby…Misha was born July 22 my deceased daughter. I am happy in Colombia, it is all about nature, and the Universe for me here. I find it hard to concentrate when in Florida as something is always happening that is distressful to me. I had a wonderful time in RI and I hope I can see you next time I am up your way. I will certainly welcome your visit here also…xoxo

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  6. I’M GLAD YOU FOUND YOUR PEACE. THE USA IS NOT ALL BAD. THERE’RE SOME GOOD PEOPLE THAT STILL LIVE HERE BUT THE COUNTRY HAS CHANGED SO MUCH SINCE I GREW UP. I DON’T LIKE IT BUT YOU HAVE TO REMEMBER THAT TODAYS WORLD PEOPLE ARE NOT TAKING THEIR CHILDREN TO CHURCH TO TEACH THEM GOD’S LAW TO LIVE BY.SOME STUDENT GOING TO COLLEGE DON’T EVEN KNOW WHO THE VICE PRESIDENT IS, SO WHAT CAN WE EXPECT. OBAMA SAID, HE WAS GOING TO GIVE US CHANGE AND HE KEPT HIS PROMISE AND NOT TO THE GOOD. [SO SICK.] HE BROUGHT THE COUNTRY DOWN. EVERYDAY THERE’RE MURDERS IN OUR CITIES FOR NO REASON. HORRIBLE. THE GOD NEWS IS THAT GOD WINS IN THE END NO MATTER WHAT THE NEAR FUTURE BRINGS. I BELIEVE HE’S ON HIS WAY.HE’S AS SICK OF THE MESS AS YOU AND I ARE. GRANNY USA.

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  7. Granny, it is all about not listening to hateful rhetoric or drama. I have found that in Colombia. I enjoy the peace I have created and it is quite a drastic change when I visit my former home of Florida. That way of life is just to crazy for me anymore, and I really think the world should evolve I do..I just don’t want to be dragged into the mud of others…that is all.

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