Sophia and I have made regular trips back to Columbia since our move five months ago. Erick has come with us on the weekends that he can. Each trip is a little different, as far as who we visit and what we do. Every trip is the same, though, in that nothing is the same. It's a statement of the obvious, I know.
There is no way to explain to someone who hasn't been there what it feels like to reenter a picture that you're no longer a part of. This is particularly true of our weekday visits. To hop back into an everyday reality that we're no experiencing ourselves is confusing - for me, for Sophia, and I can only assume for those we visit. It's a tension that I am completely willing to live with because I care so much about maintaining real and lasting friendships. I am willing to feel uncomfortable and a little out of place in order to find a new place in the picture.
It's funny that I use the picture as a metaphor. Because I never take my camera on these visits. Or if I do, I leave it in the van. I had written this off as accidental until my drive home this last time. A big part of me still fights the need to take pictures because that's something "guests" do when they come for a visit, and I so don't want to be a guests with my family and my friends. But I am. Maybe a guest with some history, but a guest all the same.