Picture taken from the top, and angled toward the left. The time of dusk can be seen in the sky, lights from the buildings are golden bright. The picture shows a canal at the bottom, it is surrounded by tall buildings of European architecture. The start of the canal's division is visible, it is divided in two parts, the center dividing the two parts expands as there is a building structure that becomes broader. This is in the German city of Hamburg.

Not From Here, Not From There. Where Am I From Again?

When I decided to move abroad, I felt ready and prepared for anything. I remember being so tired of Mexico, Mexican lifestyle, even Mexican people. How wrong I was. And after a couple of months living in Germany, I realized how Mexican I was, and how much I needed my people, my lifestyle and my country.

It is funny because I had a similar experience when I first moved out of my parent’s house. I was so done with “family life”. I wanted to be independent, to live on my own and I definitely felt ready to do so. After a couple of months, I was already missing everything and started to visit my parents once or twice a week, just to spend some time with them and my siblings.

Nowadays it is basically impossible to visit them on a weekly basis, we get to talk once or twice a week through video calls, and I am grateful for that. At least I get to talk to them and see their faces. It is not the same as being with them physically but that is better than nothing. Life has shown me how wrong I was in several aspects while growing up.

I never really appreciated the food, the colors or the music back in my country. Here in Germany, we enjoy many great benefits, like safety and quality of life, but we lack the Latino intensity, the Latino perspective that I used to despise and now understand and miss. It is just funny how different everything seems once you move to another country. The past seems so precious now… you can find yourself missing things such as that hellish heat that made you (me) curse all the way back home from school, and yet, at the same time, it can give you the sensation of all those things not being part of you anymore, in particular, to not feel a part of anything anymore.

You adapt your lifestyle to the country you live in, you adapt your taste, the way you speak, the language you communicate with, the way you boil eggs for a morning brunch, the kind of milk you drink, you even get to love sparkling water (when you actually used to hate it!). You are not that person who left, you feel like you do not know who you are or where you belong to anymore. And for a long time, I felt so stupid just by thinking about it, but the more people I talk to about this, the more I realize that I am not from here, and yet I am not from there. I am Mexican, but in many aspects of my life I am now also German.

My Mexican roots, the color of my skin, my mother tongue that I now love and treasure, those things will always define me as a Mexican woman, and I take great pride of that. But the place I chose to live in, my new lifestyle, and the place I decided to call home are German and I am finally in peace with that.

I used to feel like I was missing so many things in my hometown back in Mexico, but a couple of months ago I realized this is my home now, and the only thing I was missing was the opportunity to enjoy the life I decided to live, in the place I have chosen and now love.

Hope you enjoy my thoughts on this.

Lots of love, Monica.


Monica Violante-Drost

A professional with a background as a language teacher and translator, also a traveler enthusiast currently living in Europe. Loves to recreate make-up looks and discover new beauty products. Her passions are learning and reading.

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