Dear Adoption, There is Always Something Missing
I am Colombian.
I am Swedish.
I am almost American.
I can’t say that I’m Colombian without an explanation.
I can’t say that I’m Swedish without an explanation.
I can’t say that I’m American yet.
So what am I?
Where do I belong?
Colombia is my home, biologically.
Sweden is my background, culturally.
America is my life, by choice.
In my heart and soul I know I belong in Colombia.
Es mi tierra.
But I don’t feel the right to claim it.
I never lived there.
I didn’t grow up there.
I was born there.
I was abandoned there.
I was removed from there.
Sweden welcomed me.
Sweden took my in as one of its own, and cared for and nurtured me.
It’s what I know.
I was raised there, learned traditions, made childhood friendships there.
It’s my mother tongue because it’s the language I first spoke.
But I don’t feel tied to Sweden in any way, not even by family.
America is where I found love.
America is where I chose to live.
It’s where I’ve become adult.
It’s where I’ve built a family.
It’s where I’ve made a life.
It’s where my home has come to be.
I’m made up of all three combined.
I wish I could say
Instead I feel like by claiming Colombian I run the risk of being put to the test.
Instead I feel that by claiming Swedish I am not being true to myself.
And I simply can’t claim American yet.
I’m a Swedish Colombian whose home is America.
I’m a Colombian Suede whose home is America.
I’m partially all three.
I’m none fully.
Recently the pull of my origin is getting stronger.
I know the day will come when I return.
I can sense the feeling of coming home.
One day I will feel that I belong, that I have the right to claim my homeland, that I can leave the explanations out and simply say:
– Soy colombiana”