I declared my intention, over and over in my head, to “hit the ground running” upon my arrival in London. After three weeks of pounding the pavement with a heavy laptop on my back during my daily commute, I developed plantar fasciitis, an injury to the connective tissue at the arch of the foot. After a range of treatments, including stretches and shoe inserts, tonight was the first night I could walk home from the tube at a normal pace without pain.
It has been nearly three months since they stamped my resettlement visa at Heathrow Airport. Since that time, I have been putting one foot in front of the other, journeying toward what I hope might one day feel like “normal” life again. Each step has been an act of faith, and often what I thought looked level turned out to be uneven ground. So often, whatever I assumed, culturally or logistically, has been perfectly wrong.
My parents are over to visit, giving me fresh eyes on my new circumstances. Having them here brings a much-needed sense of continuity back to me. Still, the journey ahead is one I must ultimately take on my own–toward an understanding of what brought me here, and how to stand tall on foreign soil, sure-footed in this strange new land.