I'm pretty sure I am living a double life. Spending the school year in Austin and the summers back home in El Paso, has become one of the biggest obstacles I faced when choosing to leave home for college. In Austin I am a motivated and involved student. In El Paso I am a lazy bum who sleeps and eats all day. Moving back and forth is something I still haven't gotten the hang of.
As I had this conversation with a friend who is in the same situation as me, we both agreed that we were living double lives. (I think mostly because we like to make our lives sound more interesting than they actually are.) One thing that saddened us is how it seems that life at home had gone on without us. Every morning our parents leave for work and our siblings leave for school, so we wake up to an empty house. The rest of the day we just find ourselves watching reruns of the Golden Girls and making pointless trips to the Target clearance section. We both agreed to find jobs but most places would rather not hire someone who will be gone in three months. The worst though, is realizing that some friends have become strangers.
Last summer it took me a whole month to get into the swing of things and make a life for myself that I actually enjoyed. I took a summer class, interned with Latinitas and was lucky enough to find a summer job as a hostess. I also began to realize how much my hometown inspires me. Living in the capital of Texas is very different from living in a town that borders Mexico. When I come back home I try to take in as much of my Mexican culture as I can. I practice my Spanish while visiting my abuelitios, make my mom teach me how to make family recipes, and I write. El Paso's rich history, diverse culture and above all loving people is my biggest inspiration for writing. I am optimistic that this summer I will experience the same inspiration.
Dropping everything in Austin to come home every summer is NOT easy but it's worth it. Being home for a summer is a humbling and beautiful experience that I would never want to miss out on. Home is definently where the heart is, and it is important to never forget where you came from.