I’ve been home for just over a month now and I can tell you — it’s already happening. I’m feeling the conflict between the more liberal (Western) ideas I adopted and/or became accustomed to while living abroad and the hyper-conservatism of all things Philippine in culture, nature. Things here feel almost backwards; definitely stifling. Then again, wether I allow myself to be stifled or not is entirely up to me.
If I want to rock the boat and talk about contraceptives, no one is stopping me – technically. If I want to talk about my thoughts on marriage, religion, LGBTQ rights (i.e. human rights), and tattoos, no one is stopping me (for now, at least — with Duterte sitting as president, I don’t know how long my liberties will be protected for!).
So, maybe I will. Hopefully I will. I’m happy to be home. Being home does not come without its struggles, but I’m home … and being home is a liberty in itself. One that I wouldn’t trade for the world and would pay for with my life.