bicultural people seem happiest when . . .

21413737 Some one gets me!! Someone totally gets me!!

I found this quote while visiting the World Missions 101 Site last night. It SO resonates with how I feel . . . I've explained it before as being a milkshake.

“We can get out and learn to live in the new culture, and, in time, we will feel as at home in it as our own, possibly even more so. Something happens to us when we adapt to a new culture, we become bicultural people. . . .

In one sense, bicultural people never fully adjust to one culture, their own or their adopted one. Within themselves they are part of both. When Americans are abroad, they dream of America, and need little rituals that reaffirm this part of themselves—a food package from home, a letter, an American visitor from whom they can learn the latest news from `home’. When in America, they dream of their adopted country, and need little rituals that reaffirm this part of themselves—a visitor from that country, a meal with its food. Bicultural people seem happiest when they are flying from one of these countries to the other.

(“Crucial Dimensions in World Evangelization”, Paul Hiebert, 1976, 4th printing, William Carey Library, Pasadenia California pg 51,52)

SO true!!!  So . . . very, very TRUE!!! :)

Any of you other "bicultural" or milkshake people out there totally identify with this passage??


  1. Nice to "meet" you, Amanda. I was born in Taiwan (Tainan) and lived there until about 9. At first I was not comfortable being bi-cultural since it felt like I didn't belong anywhere. But now, it's who I am, and I like it-- I can adjust more easily and appreciate the positives from 2 cultures, I can celebrate more holidays (if I choose), and I have a wider palate (among other advantages!)

  2. Hi Gracee,
    I just went and scanned the first page of your blog . . . OH my! You have
    your hands full with four littles--all male! How fun!! :)
    Thanks for taking the time to comment. So, your hometown is where I live
    now, neat! :) The whole idea of celebrating more holidays is just now
    becoming a reality as I adjust to being in a bicultural marriage. And the
    wider palate? That made me LOL--I really think only a Taiwanese person
    would think of that! :D
    Since you left when you were nine, how often did yall come back? Have your
    boys been here? And, your hubby . . . is he Taiwanese/American bicultural
    It's nice to "meet" you too!!

  3. Hi Amanda! THANK YOU for posting this! As it gets closer and closer to my time of departure (I'll be back in the States by October) I've started thinking a lot about the transition, what I will miss from South Africa, what I really look forward to experiencing back in Austin, etc. I have been working and living and experiencing a culture, different from the one I was raised in, for two whole years. It's going to be a very interesting and, I'm guessing, pretty difficult time when I find myself back in a place I once knew so well.... but I haven't been in for all this time. I'm glad there are other people out there who "get" us!
    And.. by the way... I love reading your blog. Thank you for being so open with sharing the new chapter in your life.
    Love to you, Megan

  4. I think I qualify as being bi-cultural. But I am happiest and saddest when flying. Excited to be going 'home' but sad at leaving another 'home'.

  5. That's true too. That flight to and fro is full of emotion!

  6. Reverse culture shock hit me hard the first time I went home.
    Part of the difficulty is that you feel as if you have changed TONS but
    everyone around you hasn't . . . and they don't really care. But, the truth
    is they have changed, just not in the same ways or to the same degrees as
    you have. It is a very interesting (and difficult) adjustment to have to
    make. But, I'm sure you will be fine . . . especially since you know to
    expect it.
    Now that my trips home are no more than 3 months, it isn't so bad. But, if
    I was moving back to the States permanently, there would be a HUGE
    adjustment to go through. Not the least of which would be that I am now
    married and married to a non-American.
    Thanks for letting me know you enjoy my blog . . . I do yours too even if I
    don't always get to read the longer posts. I do enjoy the photos and
    skimming the posts when I do have time.
    in joy,

  7. I do relate to that a lot! Thanks for posting :) Though...can it be a metaphorical plane ride and not a real 14 hours of stiffness and bad food?

  8. LOL! Ha! I was just thinking of you this morning as I was getting
    breakfast ready.

  9. Yep...I totally relate. Having lived 35 years of my life in Latin America, I've come to realize and APPRECIATE that I am part of two worlds. I can relate to both and see the good and bad in each. I think being comfortable in two different cultural dimensions makes one's life all the more richer.


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