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  • Writer's pictureVanessa Leite

I won't be there

When we move abroad, we make a pact with ourselves (or, at least, I made one with myself): make the most of the opportunity.

We know we will be far away from friends and family. We know we will miss a lot of encounters.

And, even though we know it, there's a bittersweet taste when we see our siblings and cousins getting married, getting pregnant. It is bittersweet to see our nephews, nieces, and all the babies in the family learning to talk and walk, and we are just not there.

We move abroad, and to protect ourselves from all the pain caused by the things we will miss, we indeed create a new life. All the friends and relationships you make don't get to mix and understand what is going on over there; it's like living a double life.

And that's okay, I think to myself, I still get to participate a bit: I receive static photos, sometimes animated videos, we do calls, videocalls, we try to reduce the distance, and we move on, I accept and hope there will be a moment we will meet again.

But when someone passes away, there's just nothing around to hold us. There's just no ground under our feet. So the hope to see them again is totally gone. And going through the pain alone is something really hard.

I was not there for many incredible moments, and it hurts.

And it just hurt way more that I won't be there to hug and comfort the ones I love the most in a moment of pain. That the ones with whom you share the pain aren't around to hug and comfort you either.

And, in moments like this, I try to breathe and keep moving.

And here comes the reminder of all the promises I made to myself when I chose this path.

There's just no space for failure. "You can't fail. You already lost so much. The only option now is to win."

And I'm just so sorry. So sorry for everything I missed. So sorry I can't help you go through this now.

My heart is bleeding, and I will just put some tape over it.

And I can't be sorry enough that I won't be there.

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