""Welcome home! You look happy to be back." The White Immigration officer said to me, beaming. "I am. I've been gone for a while!" And I really was at that moment. The new "scan your passport and adjust your weave for a picture" system was impressive to me. No more long lines. I was digging … Continue reading Welcome to America
You give hugs, make room for bisous on the cheek, administer kisses on the back of white hands, give warm and enthusiastic ‘good mornings’ to the friends I have brought to visit Ghana. You ask fondly about high school friends you “approved” of. You tell those I bring home, “I love and Bless you!” To me, you say “ayeekoo” when it suits you. You don’t apologize for disliking some of my friends even as you embrace others. You don’t ask after my painful moments; you just assume life goes on so I should too, and fast.
The moments immediately following a violation of any sort are the most crucial. The survivor goes through a series of emotions rather rapidly. Time feels arrested. Shock and disbelief turn into re-winding and analyzing which lead to anger, which is then served to self and to anyone who dares present a lecture on ways to be safe. All these emotions come careening into a hangar called paranoia. Paranoia has the ability to seep into core places in the survivor's life and set up shop for long-term operations; if not checked quickly, it has the potential to consume the whole fleet.