It’s been two weeks since I came back from my first conference at FIGT: Families in Global Transitions. I first heard about this conference from a former intercultural Melibee, Vanessa a couple months ago. (Gracias Vanessa!) Families in Global Transition is the first educational resource for families, organizations and service providers. FIGT’s core beliefs lies in the idea that the positive value of the international experience maximizes both human and global potential and that resilience can be learned. I was afraid I would not belong, as I went as an independent attendee, not affiliated with any school/research, and/or any company; just an individual TCK eager to learn. Little did I know that everyone at FIGT would take me in as their own. FIGT starts as a conference full of strangers, foreigners if you will, but by the end of it, we are family.
The following is a poetic reflection inspired by Will and Kane’s workshop of spoken word. I’ll develop this reflection further and more in depth on my personal blog if you’d like to tune in on that as well.
Ruth Van Reken, co-founder of FIGT
Prof. Xavier if you will
created a safe haven
for scholars, researchers, and individuals
trends and research for what it is to transcend globally
the ‘cerebro’ lies in all our stories, our findings
the hidden ties, the hidden powers
lies in all of our lives
all this knowledge
all these underlying understanding
it’s hard to make the implicit explicit
yet, we try
age, race, gender does not matter
together we are one
TCK or not
whether you traveled to asia, europe, or south america,
our emotion, our feelings, our past
‘a-ha’ ~ “nods” ~ “exactly”
no place to call ‘home’
but does that make me a
no, just different.
but that difference
“cultural integration and the illusion of closeness”
was the theme for this conference.
keynote speaker Pico Iyer said it best
“home is a project, a place where you become yourself’
“home is a piece of ‘soul’ not your ‘soil’”
It’s not where you come from
but where you are going.
facebook, linkedin, skype
we are surrounded by
is the most important.
the KEY to bridging gaps.
Ruth’s first question to me
“What’s your story?”
“Who are you?”
opened, no, held the door
for me to enter.
I felt her hand reach out,
reaching to bring me
I can’t wait
to go back
This is just my story.
Do share yours.
About the Author: Risa Zenno is a TCK who goes by Lisa. She works at the Art Institute of Seattle as an enrollment processor. In her spare time, she loves volunteering time for international education. She is a mentor to young people through Sea Change Mentoring. She considers herself a life-long learner and hopes to continue expanding her interest within international education. She also just celebrated her one year anniversary as a Melibee!