Indeed, I wrote a lot about how perfect my “Leaving” is, as it comes almost to the day when i arrived 8 years ago. I spoke a lot about how everything seems pre-ordained.
Well, now I am beginning to experience what that actually means. These days in Beijing will be a further searing of my soul to the point where i will wonder what exactly it is that i believe. Who exactly I am.
My patna Beanmilk told me today that I have to leave, before i become too Chinese. She said this after that post “The Good News Is” … what she means is that my original self is American, and the longer I stay here, the more Chinese I become. This Chinese sense of self is, in her words “originally not yours” so I should and have to leave and go back to the US in order to recover that which I am. Or else I will be wrestling with this “foreign” entity in me till it pops out my chest in a bloody mass … she says me wrestling with myself in that post is proof that i need a rest from all this.
Last night a friend asked me rhetorically: “Who are you?” because I spoke German to one kid, American to another, Chinese to another and so on …
I welcome all of this. When i was young, Whitman’s poem “Song of Myself” had a great impact. I am German and Turkish because the blood of those people runs through me. I can’t help any Turkish-ness or German-ness which I display.
America is a state of mind, a set of principles, a way of living that is as much a part of me as any blood relationship I have. But it is because I lived as an American. Surrounded by America, feeding on the tit of America, raised by a True American, I can only be a chip off that block.
Now, after 8 years in China, a whole new set of mind states, principles and ways of living are filtering through my self.
After suckling at the Chinese tit for so long, can I walk away and wipe my mouth with no effects whatsoever?
I think not.
And why would I: In my song of myself I too contain multitudes, I contradict myself and in the end can be nothing but me myself and I.
So these next few weeks will be my final roast above the spit of China.
Grease me up, yo!