My IPA Blog

My IPA: Constanza Aranguren Rodríguez

This invitation to share my thoughts on my own process of relocation allowed me to clearly perceive something that is quite obvious but somehow remains hidden: migrating is our inexorable fate as human beings. As psychoanalysts we are used to thinking about human development in terms of a journey that allows us to migrate from drives to gestures and from gestures to words. We know that we all start our journey as infants, then we migrate to childhood, adolescence, youth and end up as grown-up adults. And, if we are lucky enough to have a healthy and vivid relationship with ourselves throughout our life, then we might have found our own creative ways to go back (with much more impetus and less fear) to the baby, the infant, the child, the adolescent and the young person that we once were.  
We grow up while in the process of living and by doing so we arrive to new stages of our own self:  we conquer new territories, we may run away from old guilty feelings, we reach safe harbour, sometimes we may even burn bridges and, at other times we build new ones. We migrate due to this poetic tension that beats in our soul; we are like trees in need to ground our roots and we are also passing-by horsemen.
To overcome the fear of having put at risk the most fragile part of myself when I decided to migrate, as well as the fear of fading away or disappearing into the vacuum, I have always needed others. Others who were able to keep me in their minds when I was no longer in the same place, and others who could make a space for me in their own minds when I arrived to a new place. In hindsight, I know that I have been extraordinarily lucky to have migrated as a member of the IPA. My old friends and colleagues in my own country have kept a space for me and, during this continuing process to ground my feet in a new city, I have been warmly kept in mind by new friends, new colleagues who have been keen to listen to me, to share their own experiences with me and who have in their own way acknowledged my human need to belong to a larger community.  
Despite how disruptive my own migration has been at certain moments, the IPA Committee on Psychoanalyst Emigrating and Relocating has offered me the chance to migrate without losing the feeling of continuity.  Indeed, this committee has played a major role in my own experience of relocation. Thanks to it, migrating has been an enriching opportunity for personal and professional growth. It gave me a place where I belong to, as well as the possibility to keep walking my own path. It has stood as a touching proof that “no man is an island”, as they say here in Glasgow, my new ‘terroir’.
Constanza Aranguren Rodríguez
Colombian Psychoanalytic Society (Full Time Member)
British Psychoanalytic Society (Guest Member)

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