Season and homesickness

By Klaus Döring

The worst thing that you can do when you’re going through a tough time is to bottle it up and let it fester. Try to find someone in a similar situation as you. While most people don’t go around advertising their homesickness, that doesn’t mean they don’t feel it, too.

Stay in touch with your friends and family by phone or Skype. Maintaining your relationships with people from home is important, but don’t become too dependent on them. Set aside some time during the week to catch up, and for the remainder, focus on keeping yourself happy.

Much could be told or written about all the wonderful places worldwide. A lifetime would not be enough to discover the whole world. Millions of Filipino migrants are still working and living in many countries all over the world. But those  Filipinos are so occupied and tired with work, that on a half-day of not working, they don’t even have the energy to go out anymore.

They prefer to rest instead. They work until dawn. There’s even no more time to send letters or send emails anymore. They get up early the next day  to do the same activities. Again and again…  They fail to appear on dates or appointments even if schedules were already set. At the last minute going out on a free half-day, but suddenly guests arrive who need to be served for example. All these and more make it difficult for the ofw’s to find time for themselves.

Christmas time should let us remember and remember our beloved ones somewhere out there. Being “there” is something like being in a garden of roses. Everybody’s free to pick up flowers, but surely everybody will not find that easy because the roses are on top of the thorns. Being abroad is even more complicated than that.

Indeed, much has been written and talked about homesickness of mind and heart – especially during the Christmas season and the time between yesterday and tomorrow.

Many Filipinos stay in countries, where deep winter is reigning right now. Wearing three jackets a day, warm winter clothes and, from the start, one must always be in top form, not only lively but also elegantly.

Homesickness usually attacks, when “your people abroad” receive unpleasant notices from home, as I heard many saying before: “Problema at magpadala ka ng pera!”

The loved ones overseas even try to save a little amount for airfares just in case they need to come immediately to their families in the Philippines. Many times they consider the difficulty and complication in sending money home. Many times they can’t afford to visit the Philippines for a long time.

Homesickness comes, when we hear that one of the boys at home doesn’t want to go to school anymore. Homesickness comes when misunderstandings between husband and wife or close friends arise.

How about me? Sure, homesickness comes also for me, especially during this time. Even after living in the Philippines for good since 1999, I am still missing my home country Germany and many people there. Season and homesickness.


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