Where do we find paradise?
On the importance of seeking it.
I was born in Berlin, Germany, but we were never long for one place. My parents moved from state to state after that, always searching for better jobs for my dad and a better life for our family.
Somewhere along the way, dreaming about the next place became part of our mythology. Maybe the next place would have better weather, a prettier city. I would go on house hunting trips with my mom and we would try on different lives for ourselves as we wandered different homes. Maybe I’ll be more outgoing here, I would think, and look how beautiful the choir room is at school, maybe I’ll join!
Even places we didn’t wind up were fun to dream about. When my Dad was interviewing for a job in London, I remember sitting around the dinner table with my family wondering if we’d become more fashionable, if we’d enroll in beautiful stone schools and attend the theater on the weekends—we laughed that my dad would be the first to start speaking in an accent.
As a family, we were always coming up with our own paradise and trying to find it. We were trying on different lives for ourselves and wondering which ones we would keep.
It was contagious.
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