Missing out

5 Nov

I am homesick today. I cannot believe that I am missing out on this Election Day! One of the hardest things about living abroad is watching from afar, knowing that I cannot participate, and it hurts.

It is painful at times to realize that I am no longer part of what happens at home, and I would dearly wish to be there right now, not just because it’s an election, but because it is this election.

Even if Barack Obama does not win, it has been an incredible journey. I feel as if the journey has been mine too, because it has restored my faith in my country. It has given me back a little piece of what I lost not so long ago. It has cleansed the palate just a little bit and left in its wake a warm sense of possibility.

Twenty years ago, when my parents decided to move our family to the United States, I resisted the change with all the ferocity of my teenage self. I didn’t understand their motives and I resented being uprooted from everything I knew. In my limited view, I blamed my parents for every feeling of despair and loneliness that I experienced, and it took years and maturity to admit that I was in fact grateful for what they had done, and that however painful the process may have been, moving to America was the best thing that could have happened to me. This realization is deeper now that I live outside of the United States.

I hope the American people vote for Barack Obama. I hope they do, not just because he is a Democrat who represents the ideas that I espouse, but because it would be confirmation that a black man in America can rise to the top of the heap. It would say so many wonderful things about America, about fairness and opportunity, about openness, equality and the value of talent and hard work, things that make America a place where people can not only succeed but flourish and live the life they never thought possible.

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2 Responses to “Missing out”

  1. aighmeigh November 5, 2008 at 9:22 am #

    Well it looks like you hopes (and mine) have been answered.

    It’s a wonderful feeling…

    Hope.

    :)

  2. Helen November 5, 2008 at 3:09 pm #

    I’ve listened to his speech three times now and felt so inspired each time. Even though I’m not American, this feels like such an important and historical day to me. I’ve been trying to explain what’s going on to Kiko but I’m afraid to say he’s been more interested in whatever various mischief he’s been getting up to all day.

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