Two Roads

In addition to having an incredible time at home in America during the month of May to be in my sister's wedding I had the unique opportunity to return home to Mongolia and share those experiences with my closest friends and counterparts. I shared pictures, explained why we do the things we do and maybe most interestingly I talked about what it was like for me to be in America, the land I grew up in, and yet not feel completely at home. Being in Mongolia has taught me a tremendous amount about who I am and who I am becoming. I, though an American, am distancing myself from my home culture and instead defining myself by my values and my humannesss rather than my nationality.

Recently while driving hours through the countryside with two of my closest counterparts, Altansuvd and Saradunai, to pick up stones for our massage path in our recent outdoor park project at the hospital we started talking about what our names mean. My name means, "a fork in the road," I explained to them, "a place where one road turns into two." When they asked why that was my name I said I didn't know, but maybe because before I only had one road in my life, one way of looking at things. Now I have two, one American road and one Mongolian road. They smiled and laughed. "We're glad you have two roads now," they said, "we feel very lucky you are here with us in Mongolia." I smiled too. I feel the same way.