Moving On (+video)

Moving On

Lucia Flories


A Peruvian mom moves from Chile to Canada with her family in the early months of the pandemic, having to leave behind her other family members, her friends, and her precious pets.


We are moving! Now? Why? Who in the world is trying to move in the middle of a pandemic that has paralyzed the whole world. But, yes! We are moving. We need to leave our friends without even being able to hug each other and say goodbye. We need to leave our home, our pets, our plants, our dreams, our projects. We must leave everything behind, taking with us just our memories, our love, our family.

 Lots of complications come with this process – trying to find flights which then end up being continually cancelled, getting visas for alternate routes, selling a lot of things and donating all the baby stuff I was carefully keeping with the dream of having another baby, maybe this time, it will be a girl. Now I need to donate all that and give away my dream too. I love being a mom, I love being pregnant. But this was not the time to think about bringing another baby into this world.

I needed to find a place for our family pets: a turtle (we named him Sheldon because we like “The Big Bang Theory” but later she laid an egg, so now she is Shelly) and four lovebirds named Michelangelo, Donatello, Leonardo and Raphael after the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles.

The night before we left Chile, I could barely sleep. On July 25, 2020, I woke up early and the first thing I saw was my pair of shoes with woven straps, the sturdy and comfortable shoes that were with me on every trip and every adventure I had with my family. I wanted to write so many things, say so much and cry a lot, but there were other priorities, such as supporting all the family, especially my eldest son. The whole time I had to also be aware of trying not to touch anything, disinfecting each time, making sure we had all the necessary documents to pass each airport, each control, and arrive at our new home all together, safe and healthy.

We arrived at the airport, even earlier than usual because we didn´t want to miss our flight or if we forgot something we had enough time to pick it up. We went through all the immigration control and security and finally we got to our boarding gate, waiting there until the last minute to get on the plane that would take us to our next home.

My younger son seemed to be okay but my oldest son was very upset and angry, struggling with this difficult moment. I asked him what was wrong. He looked at me and asked: “Why do we have to leave? Why  can’t I see and say goodbye to my friends? Why?” I saw many tears coming down his sweet face and my heart broke into pieces. I couldn’t breathe. It took me a moment to find all the strength I had left and tell him that everything would be fine. I apologized to my son for making him so sad. I told him I knew it wasn’t fair for him or for anyone when things happen in such unpredictable and cruel ways.

We were all so emotional, we knew these were the last few minutes we had in Chile, where we had made so many friends, where we travelled around and fell in love with so many cities, so many views and so many ways. We hugged each other, and started crying so deeply, so painfully, crying with our hearts in our hands. We held each other tight like the sturdy straps of my shoes. We boarded the plane and began our long journey together.

Lucia Flores is from Arequipa, Perú and she arrived in Canada on July 25, 2020. She left many things behind but she will spread all the best of herself in every place and in every step she takes going forward. Recently separated with two kids, Sebastian and Liam, she is trying to figure out what to do with her life.

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