I don’t go to zoo, not anymore. I know there are some very good ones that take good care of their animals, but I have seen too many that were truly horrible. In East Africa I once saw several male lions in a small cage and men who put large sticks into the cage so that the lions would roar to the spectators. In West Africa animals with so small cages they barely could move. I remember especially a large cat (not sure what kind) with beautiful ice-blue eyes. It just lay there in the dirty too small cage looking at us, with nowhere to go. My heart ached for it.
I’m not saying this blog has been like this. Not at all. I had a choice. I could go somewhere, unlike this cat. I could for instance have written very scientific posts, without any traces of me in them. But I made a choice when fellow writer and good friend Chris Galvin challenged me to do an alphabetic blog. I had looked for an opportunity long to reflect on my background. This seemed like a good channel for it.
It has been a good month, I think. Though, in retrospect, it were perhaps too many posts to write. I struggled with some of the last ones. I don’t feel they are good posts. I had decided to write the A-Z posts quickly, because I have other projects waiting. And I decided to go with the thought association flow. As soon as I decided what word I should connect to each blog letter, I just wrote some associations around it, then posted it, without anyone reading through. I think some posts turned out good, others not so good. There might have been some poor language. Sorry about this.
The blog writing has in many ways also felt like I was in a zoo. I rarely talk about myself, not about my background. It might be because I know many will not understand. I’m also quite shy. It feels scary to have been this open and personal as I have been in the A-Z blog, though I have tried to balance it. I hope some of the posts have been interesting. I am very grateful for the people who have taken the time to read them. Thank you all.
I hope my blog has brought some thoughts to those who didn’t know what a third culture or cross cultural child was, or at least I hope it has given somebody the want to read more about the topic. I must stress that I have written about my experiences. Other TCK and CCK might have other experiences. There are also people with more extreme TCK or CCK background than me.
But I hope I have given some food for thought. There are many children and adults with this kind of childhood who struggle, who grieve for something they often don’t know what is, who don’t feel at home anywhere. And like I have written about, many have learned not to talk about it, so it become hidden struggles. I hope some TCK and CCK who have read my posts become inspired to talk about themselves. It might feel like you’re in a zoo, but it might open the cage door and let you out in the freedom.
Thanks for reading!
The picture is taken by me at the Munch museum in Oslo.