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Most Zimbabweans abroad suffer from severe homesickness

06 Oct 2017 at 19:05hrs | Views
There is a feeling you feel and you feel that you had never felt that feeling before. This feeling is described by many as Severe Home Sickness. Being homesick is a normal feeling, one that many people feel from time to time to express their nostalgia or longing of the familiar, especially if they have been away for a while. You miss home; you miss the smell of summer, the smell of the rains hitting the baked soil for the first time after a dry spell. You even miss a social gathering where you speak in your language. You have day dreams of crossing flooded Masekandauya or just seeing a cow or milking it. So many things we take for granted at home become a wonder abroad.

The insensitive ones will be quick to say pack your bags and come home, but those with brains do understand the sacrifices some do while languishing abroad.

Home sickness is technically classified as an anxiety and can express itself in mild to extreme forms and can happen to anyone: children, adults, seniors, short term travellers, long term travellers, and expats. Many people feel this way if they see something close to home or reminds them of home which is usually what triggers my homesickness. People tend to vent their frustration in African or Home movies some will just brood and pray to be home sooner than later.

Most Zimbabwean feel homesickness because the culture shock is too intense, they feel unstable in their new surroundings, feel frustrated by the language barrier or trying to deal with the lack of close friends. Sometimes our accent makes it difficult to communicate effectively with those around us. it was in the UK most realised that the Nose stifled accent from Mt Pleasant and Girls high was not English and indeed Greek. Speaking through your nose which is widely accepted at home as classic English is indeed tosh and as a result the barrier created by such triggers a bolt of serious Home Sickness.

It's a feeling that affects everybody at some point while they try to sort out their new life as an expat and one that most struggled with in the beginning of the year living abroad.

Homesickness While Living Abroad

Most people wish that friends and family visit them. You see once the family visits that friend's travel from Wales to Corby to see a friend's mother. This is not always love but serious home sickness. Any person old enough to be your mother and speaks your language becomes your mother. Maputi becomes a delicacy. But it's a little different when your oldest and best friends come, there's something about seeing the familiar face of a relative who you've known for a long time that just brings you that feeling of comfort and joy.

When you drop them off at the airport, you are overcome with a huge feeling of nostalgia. We make many friends but it's different when it's somebody that you've known for years and has been by your side during good and bad times. Staying abroad makes one realise that Home is best and that so many things you took for granted are very important and naturally healing.

It's really easy to sort of isolate yourself when you live abroad. When you're living in a different country, it's not exactly possible to pick up the phone and ask friends to hangout. There is no time for social life but work.

We go out about daily lives and lose touch over time if we don't work at keeping in touch. Of course there is WhatsApp, Facetime, Facebook, email, more than enough tools in our hands to stay connected but there's nothing like hugging an old friend and seeing that excited look on their face. Sometimes you miss sitting in the dust or queuing for a combi.

Most people are people who get lonely easily if they don't talk to someone or see someone often and they'll miss them a lot. They like to stay connected, be informed and like to hear about people's lives, especially the big changes. They hope to have long calls chatting with less money begging calls.

As we get older, everybody goes on their separate paths at one point; friends grow apart, the time and distance gets bigger and longer.

People abroad miss out on weddings, funerals and parties. They miss out on new friend's songs changes in languages. They just miss home. They miss dinner with family and playing with aunties and uncles. They know they came to UK to build a life of their own and they know that no matter what happens, their friends and family will always be there.

Luckily they have incredible people in their live that supported their decision to move and are happy for them. Plus this gives them a perfect reason to travel and visit a new country for themselves!

in most cases people think about going back home. But some had spent their savings on tickets and had hoped to help the family from the wilderness. Going back home is not an option. When times were tough and they felt so out of place due to the culture shock, that thought crossed their minds a few times. However, they knew that this was something they needed to do and it was their first time truly being away from home.

it is true that it does not matter where you are in the world, all that mattered is who is there with you. You could be living in a huge city filled with people but feel lonely if you don't have friends and family to enjoy it with. You could be living in the desert, on an island or in an igloo, but having the best time of your life if you are surrounded by your loved ones.

It is very true that Home is where the heart is and where the heart will always be. Diaspora must learn that their home is where they feel the happiest and it doesn't technically have to be in Zimbabwe. let your children enjoy your sweat first then others last. it sounds selfish but your children have only you and you are busy making the whole tribe happy.

People abroad are actually very lucky to have this amazing opportunity, to learn a new culture and language and to be introduced to new things, but they would have gone wherever their close friends are. it's not easy but it has to be done.

The best way to deal with homesickness is to really remind yourself how blessed you have been so far, with great family, an amazing life old friends and new friends. The quality of life for your children and the opportunity to help those back home in need should give you comfort in diaspora. You can't keep wishing that everything and everyone that you love could all be in the same place all the time. There is time to let go of those desires.

And how could you not feel lucky or happy that you get to travel and learn? It almost seemed selfish at times that you would feel that way and yearns for the past. But no it is real, ndo zviripo.

But friendship is a two way street. It is a relationship and both people do need to work at keeping in touch since it's not so easy anymore. And you will realize that true friends will always be there, it can be years since the last time you saw them but when you do, it feels like no time has passed. Each time I see Sondon Stalin Mugaradziko it feels like we have always been together. Friendship is not watered by closeness but it is watered by truthfulness.

If you had let homesickness take over you every time you felt it, you would have been back in Harare in two seconds. And you would have never forgiven yourself for missing out on this opportunity. Part of traveling, exploring and seeing the world is to let go of the past, free yourself of whatever it is that was holding you back and just do.

Most in Diaspora have changed professions and are now helping the whole tribe. They are grateful they left home.

Sometimes all it takes is just to hear the familiar voice of your parents, or siblings to remember that homesickness is just a temporary feeling and will pass.

Being abroad is all about seeing things in a positive perspective and not letting that anxiety take over because if you do, you might miss out on some amazing experiences. Yes home is best but make where you are home for your children and for you and your spouse. Home sickness is a punishment for a craving of a better life.

Source - Dr Masimba Mavaza
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