The Newcomer

Belonging Everywhere and Nowhere by Lois Bushong
Belonging Everywhere and Nowhere by Lois Bushong

I am currently reading Lois Bushong‘s new book Belonging Everywhere and Nowhere. She is an Adult Third Culture Kid (ATCK) and counsellor, currently based in Indianapolis and a good friend of mine through the Families in Global Transition Conferences I attend. I’m not a counsellor and never will be, but Lois is my friend and her subject matter is my favourite subject, so I simply had to review her book.

Well, I don’t think I’ve even reached chapter two yet but I am loving it. It is SO much more than a guide for counsellors. It is a guide for expats. Crammed with quotes from the world’s expat issue gurus I am reminded on every page why this life we lead is so filled with tough bits. Of massive highs and crushing lows. When I got to her mention of a quote by Pico Iyer, who wrote The Global Soul, which has been on my bedside table for six months now, and how he says we expat ‘live between the cracks’ that I had to stop reading Lois’ book and write the following poem:

Serial Expat – The Newcomer

I live between the cracks

in gaps

that split light from dark

and in this dusky dawnish place

I feast on fusion,

confused by being both

betwixt and bewitched,

hooked but spooked

by my own dichotomy –

an ambivalence that swells my heart

and sickens my stomach.


I send postcards to myself,

snapshots of reflections,

of past lives,

waltz into my thoughts,

disturb my status quo,

flick me on the shoulder hard.

I smile. Then

like fireflies flickering in a corner.






into this

bulimic gorging

that makes a global nomad

love and despise

this addictive normality.

Imprisoning us in chains of gold.



2 thoughts on “The Newcomer

  1. I hope you all end up as preachers. Think of all the insight your struggles long to yield. I am not ex anything, but I feel like a kind of pat-but-not-yet-pat, so there are similarities: ‘for here we have no lasting city, but we seek one which is to come’ – a fragment many heard and never forgot. Love from a dreamy admirer of insights and poets, Uncle Rob


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