I hadn’t been home in five years. The place that was once home, anyway: Argentina, my original birthplace that over the years became just a memory, existing within a cloud of nostalgia. Even after 17 years in Texas, where I’d spent nearly two-thirds of my life, I stubbornly thought Buenos Aires would stay the same. But the face of my grown cousin gesturing for me to dance reminded me of the inevitable passage of time. I had once said goodbye to this chubby, red-faced toddler through the gates of airport security.
Between two worlds
Podcast flash story by Lucia Benavides
The story is about the struggles of identity many migrants face; and the regret of having left home. It took place during a visit to my home country of Argentina. I had been living in the U.S. for 17 years at that point – after moving at the age of 9 – and had largely accepted my life in the U.S. by then. But it was during my uncle’s wedding, watching family members dance around me and seeing them so grown and happy and different from when I had left, that I wondered: What would it have been like if I had stayed? I couldn’t shake off the feeling that I had been robbed of something; of a life. I wasn’t meant to live my life in the U.S., I was meant to live my life in Argentina. But, in the end, that’s not the way things panned out.
About the author
Lucía Benavides is a writer and journalist currently based in Barcelona, Spain. Originally from Argentina, her interests revolve mostly around women’s issues and identity. Before Spain, she worked as a reporter/ producer at the NPR station in Austin, Texas. She’s been published on NPR, The Atlantic and LA Review of books, among others.
“What It’s Like To Hear Paul McCartney In Liverpool,” NPR
“In Search of the Naples — and Women — of Ferrante’s Novels,” LA Review of Books
“Living With Gabriel García Márquez’s Ghost,” LitHub
Memoria was written, produced, edited and presented by Natalie Vella
Between two worlds was written and read by Lucia Benavides. The story was sound edited by Natalie Vella.
Music in this episode was by Blue Dot Sessions, Sage the Hunter, When in the West and The Envelope.
Illustrations by Peta Manning. Her book, See Me Doodle, is out now.
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