Personal Loss While Overseas

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Sometimes the things we least want to happen while overseas, happens.

Last weekend, I received news that my step-father was killed in a motorcycle accident. I’m not sure what hurt more, knowing that I hadn’t seen my step-father since December or not being able to be close to my family when it happened.

I guess death is one of the things you have to be ready for when you decide to live overseas. I mean, you never know when it will be someone’s time to go, but it sure does hurt not being able to be around immediately when something happens.

I guess I was lucky that the day I found out was my town’s festival. I usually help with carrying the portable shrine, so I had just finished with the morning part when I received the news. I took about 2-3 hours on our break to go home and be alone before deciding to go back out. You see, I figured that there was nothing much I could do since the earliest I would be able to fly home was Wednesday. I had to clear up some visa issues and Monday was a holiday, so Tuesday was the earliest it could get done.

I’m glad I did decide to finish up my day at the festival instead of crying in my apartment. For a few hours, I could be around friends, see my students, and not be alone. Of course, I mourned later that night and some of Monday as well, but I think keeping busy helped to distract me from the distance and time difference.

As of now, I am back in New York spending some much needed time with family for three weeks, but I’ll be back to Japan soon!

Until then, contact your loved ones as often as you can and if physically possible, make sure to stop in or hug them.

Until next time,

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