Timeless Treasures

When I was a little girl and lived in Finland, I had a special friend. Her name was Tiina. My friend and I lived a few hundred metres from each other and were in the same class at school. A lot of the time, she almost lived at my place, only going home to sleep. We baked together, we played together, we did just about everything together. On my birthday, I usually only had one friend over and it was always her. When I look at my childhood photo albums, Tiina is there next to me in almost every photo.

Migrating to Australia tore our friendship apart. Yet being a child of eleven years, I did not comprehend it at the time. I did not understand how final moving to the other side of the world would be. Leaving Tiina behind in my birth country, left a huge gap in my life and I would guess us moving away, did the same for her.⁠

It took 24 years before I saw my childhood friend again. We were 36 years old at the time. I knocked at her door. In my mind we were still little girls. When the door opened, she grew up in front of my eyes. There she stood, now a fully grown woman. Both of us took a moment before embracing, to just stand and study each other. That was the moment I understood that the body is only the outer shell of the soul. How otherwise is it possible that we still, after such a long time, knew each other so well?  

Tiina and I had lost too many years from each other’s lives. The social and cultural dislocation is the personal toll of migration, but often only understood in hindsight. Sometimes life gives and sometimes life takes. We don’t always have a say at what happens, which is especially the case with child migrants.

Due to living 15,000 kms apart, the time I have had with Tiina as an adult is very short. I have only met her two more times since our first reunion, each time forming into those life’s golden nugget moments. What joy it has been to share common childhood memories together, to reminisce and take a trip down a memory lane. It is only now, later in life, that I am beginning to understand just how important part of each other’s lives we were and continue to be. It is those childhood cords that are not easily broken.

Life goes on. My parents chose another track, an un-walked path. My family made a new life here in Australia. But my childhood belongs to Finland and my friend Tiina was an integral part of those early years. I am a migrant child who was uprooted and re-rooted into a foreign soil, but childhood memories are timeless treasures of the heart which I can always re-visit.

To receive notifications of new blog posts, please enter your email address below:

2 Comments Add yours

  1. annemariedoecke says:

    Today, very early in the morning (4 am), I tuned into a Zoom workshop in America. This morning, the focus was on Spirit time. Last week it was on Spirit space. These concepts are a little difficult to grasp and I’m just learning.

    Anyway, Spirit time is how we are always in between the encounter of connectedness and the response of aloneness. In a way, your blog was about this.


    Liked by 1 person

    1. I suppose the experience of being uprooted and then re-rooted gives a person both those experiences, of being connected followed by loneliness.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s