After living outside of Puerto Rico for four years, Jonathan Pacheco is back on the island and enjoying the benefits of being back.
“I decided to return in November 2021 mainly because the homesickness was already too much. You always have days that are a little tougher than others, but on those tough days — when I was in the United States — it was quite difficult to keep up my spirits,” said Pacheco, who acknowledges that although in Puerto Rico he has also been able to experience emotionally challenging days, he can handle them much better as the island gives him multiple reasons to keep going.
Life in Dallas, Texas represented a strong culture shock. “I went from moving freely on an island to living in a state where everything is pretty sedentary, and I didn’t like that very much. It wasn’t where I wanted to be,” Mr. Pacheco said. “The thing I missed the most was my family and the beach. I grew up super close to the beach and not having that accessibility for me was super difficult, in addition to being so far from family, friends and people you really love. You can’t put a price on that.”
At the end of 2021, Jonathan was clear that he wanted to make his life in Puerto Rico. It was very important to him to be intentional and take action, and then he heard about El Comeback. “I think the program is super excellent. I am always grateful because the ConPRmetidos and El Comeback team were the first people I contacted, and they answered very quickly, understood my point of view and —at a time when I didn’t even know how to start the process— they directed me. That helped a lot,” said Pacheco, who in just two months already had a job offer with Banco Popular de Puerto Rico and in January 2022 was able to finalize his return to the island.
Now that he has returned to Puerto Rico, “I would say that my life has taken a 180 degree turn. I was able to reestablish those relationships, which although I had not completely lost, it is not the same to have them so close by to engage with. Additionally, I have been able to see Puerto Rico from another angle. I grew up as a child, I was then a student, and now that I’m living the working life in Puerto Rico I feel that it has too many benefits, especially having nearby and accessible all the things that one longed for”, commented the young native of Cabo Rojo, who achieved his goal of acquiring a property in Puerto Rico.
Jonathan ended by telling us that “one of the most important lessons I learned from living outside of Puerto Rico was to trust myself. That helped me be clear about what I like, both at work and in my personal life. I think that helped me identify what my values were and how I wanted my life to be.”