For the past 4 years, since I moved from my home country, I have had the great opportunity to have always shared either Christmas or New Year’s Eve with my family. For many, this may not seem like a big deal, even for a 20s younger version of me it wouldn’t. But the reality is that currently, for Venezuelans, the opportunity to reunite with your family during holidays is something extremely cherished.
Venezuelan’s have been fleeing the country at an alarmist rate for the past 10 years, or even more. Almost anyone who has a slight opportunity abroad, or at least some means to leave, have considered it. Millions have done so. Of all of my inner circle of friends, only 1 person remains back home. The rest has fled. The reasons are many, but they all fall in the same basket: A country that is being shut down by its government, by the insecurity and lack of opportunities to even have a decent living.
But I won’t talk about politics today, I will talk about how grateful I am that once again, I was able to share the Holidays with my parents (my brother could not make it, he’s also living abroad).
Here in Paraguay, we were able to just relax together. To do the everyday type of things: buy groceries, cook dinner, walk the dog, TOGETHER. For an entire month. Never felt as good buying groceries as I did the last month (anyone who really knows me know how much I do not enjoy groceries). I was able to see my parents, for the first time in SO LONG (we are talking about decades), enjoying a walk in the streets, without anxiously turning their back every 5 minutes to ensure they won’t get robbed (they still did so, it’s like a reflex, but less frequently). It was like a dream come true, and it made me dream again about that day when I will be able to provide them the life they worked so hard to give me.
The next posts in this blog will share some of the experiences we shared during this Holidays. Memories are the happiest ones, although a little bittersweet, as they are indeed memories and not today’s reality (they went back home). But hey, let’s not get all sad, let’s keep hoping things will eventually turn around for our country.
The reality is that I, as probably most of Venezuelans, never imagined living the life we now have (better or worse). We just never thought things could change SO MUCH in such a “short” amount of time. CHERISH the present!