Thursday, June 21, 2007

A Tale of Two Women - A Mini Series, Part IV

Winter of 1998-1999 was a great time period for Claudia. Her younger sister was preparing for her upcoming wedding, and like most weddings insights joyful celebrations. Her sister’s wedding was no different. You could feel the joyfulness across the lands. Claudia and her family traveled to Mexico for Christmas / New Year’s holiday, which would be the first trip to Mexico for her toddler son. Claudia was thrilled beyond belief to be traveling home, to see her family, and introduce her son to the world she migrated from not long ago. Clint had to return to the states due to his work schedule but Claudia and her son remained in Mexico on an extended holiday. The joys she experienced being home were unspeakable, and to share them with her son was even greater. However, in spite of the enthusiasm to be home Claudia also felt for the first time like a visitor because she had been away from her country for a few years now and so many things had changed. Perplexing actually, as the family unit essentially was the same as she remembered before leaving, however, their lives had moved forward. For some returning to their homes after so long, those that have left seem to have a locked in memory of the way things were when they left and upon their return home are a little surprised at the changes. Although logically it stands to reason things move forward, yet emotionally one may feel left out from the advancements that had occurred in their absence.

Thankfully due to Claudia’s strength and ability to manage many things on her own she was able to navigate through the international flights, clearing customs with her green card holding, and entertaining a toddler for her return home to the states.

During late winter, early spring Claudia and her family once again traveled to Mexico to participate in her younger sister’s wedding. Clint recalls this being one of the most memorable events he had been too. Like most Mexican celebrations they are filled with such enthusiasm, passion, and endurance. Unlike the celebrations in the states that last a mere couple of hours at best, the Mexicans take great pride in celebrating holidays and life in general.

Upon Claudia’s return to the states she acknowledged that her medications were not working properly and sought immediate care, for she felt her body reacting unusually and her feelings becoming very depressed. Understandably so, as she was returning back to her home where it consisted merely of her husband and son with regular, but not daily, visits with her in-laws. The one thing Claudia did regularly to balance her emotions aside from the routine blood draws and doctor’s visits was running, so she began her running regiment once again. She was also working part-time to earn extra money. Neither her nor Clint are real good with finances, and neither really want to take the role of CFO in their household so they are always spending money and getting in fights because there is no money. Both hotheaded stubborn people their arguments could be heated, but their undying love for one another seemed to always be the curing ointment for them.

Deanna was settling in to Georgia really well. Found work immediately through a temporary employment agency, which allowed her the versatility of finding the exact job she was looking for, even though at the time she had no idea what she really wanted to do. Really all she wanted to do was take this time and lick her wounds, which she allowed herself to do. Moreover, Deanna felt relieved and lighter because here in Georgia she could be essentially anyone she wanted to be for no one ‘knew’ her. In her new town with a clean slate she now walked taller, held her head up with confidence and even radiantly glowed as the beautiful woman she was. She took this opportunity to also find solitude in prayer and build a stronger union with God for He had been the only saving grace that had gotten through this far. In addition to these ever personal sessions with God, she began to spread her wings and set about traveling all over the southern states from the Carolinas, to Savannah, Florida, Alabama, and Mississippi. Nearly every weekend she spent her time exploring the high-lights and low-lights of the south. She was utterly amazed that still in 1999 there were people of the south that continued to believe the south won the civil war and prejudices towards black people remained at an all time high. The ignorance of these people was unfathomable to Deanna. Being the some what rebel she was because she always felt a kindred spirit with the other “under-dogs” of the world, she found herself establishing friendships with those that happened to be black. She could careless of their skin coloring for she truly never saw it in anyone, she only saw their heart on the inside, this was how Deanna gauged people because she always believed we all wore certain masks as part of our daily lives, different ones to fit the appropriate occasion, but she always looked through the eye holes of the mask to see the truth of the person through their eyes. Although she was great about spotting the wrongdoers for everyone else accept herself, of course.

Nonetheless, Deanna was feeling alive again, feeling lighter, and free to breath again. Felt the chains of burden and struggle had been momentarily lifted until she would get word from back home. Those moments were always reality checks for her. Deanna’s mom would call and ‘check in’ with her and see how she was doing. Thankfully for Deanna her mom always keeps things on the surface so there were never any ‘heavy’ discussions or questions as to whether she was coming home anytime soon, but rather girl talks and gossip catch up. Deanna’s father on the other hand spoke from his heart, and struggled with he’s feelings of wanting to express himself to his daughter and yet holding back from trying to push his thoughts and opinions on her as he acknowledged she was a grown woman that needed to make her way in life, but secretly was missing her terribly. When he would call her on the phone he would just chit-chat and make sure she was ok, but when he wrote letters to her those poured different feelings. Being the protective father and giving fatherly advise and even going so far as to remind Deanna that she had a little nephew that needed to know his aunt. Ahhhhhhhhh, these were the moments that she’d pull the guilty backpack back on and carry it around.

By the end of 1999 Deanna had resolved herself that she needed to move home and take care of responsibilities concerning her divorce proceedings and her business. The divorce proceedings were merely a matter for formality but still needed to be managed, for until they were, the wound would remain open. Moreover, the new owners she had entered into contractually for the purchase of her business had now defaulted on their contract, which required Deanna to pursue legal action against them. So, she packed her belongings, said farewells to her newfound friends, tucked her cat in the car and began the long dreaded trek back to California.

1 comment:

a_akak said...

I am still running this Marathon ..... and will finish it!!!