At our new parent orientation at ISB they said that one of the things we will experience in this stage of our adjustment is that things that would typically feel like very small issues or challenges in our home countries will feel impossible or enormous for awhile. They also said to expect the feeling that you've lost your identity. Both of these statements hit home in a major way for me. I feel it almost every single day.
I've lost my independence in many ways. I'm very dependent on others to get anywhere and get almost anything done. Things that I used to do without a thought are now a major ordeal. I love freedom and doing spontaneous things on my own. That part of who I am is on pause in many ways. That wears on me a bit. I don't like that part.
My heart has just settled down from Russ and I making our first attempt driving out the main gate and onto a main road... Bicycles, cars, pedestrians.. OH MY!
I realized on that little excursion that I won't be driving more than a mile from our neighborhood any time soon and it kinda stings. He did great and was chill. I was a nervous wreck.
Me just getting in the car to drive.. which I've been known to do all the way from Texas to California or Florida... That's gone for a long time.
Every single day we encounter multiple, multiple, multiple things that at home would be simple but here feel impossible. We are jumping through what feels like hoops of fire to me that at home would have been a match stick.
I like to keep my mind and heart and Facebook and blog mostly positive because I have everything to be joyful about and little to complain about but I want to be clear... This is NOT a cakewalk.
My blog and Facebook page often show what's served at the table. Sometimes the mess in the kitchen isn't worth dwelling on. Sometimes the mess isn't mine to share.
Just know that dishes this elaborate never get served without a crazy mess and a lot of work happening in the background.
So far I've been crazy busy or nearly collapsed from the time we found out we were moving till now minus a few sacred and rare vacation moments. I'm crazy grateful for the result but it's not without intense focus and work and times I'm hiding under a blanket.
It isn't in any way easy and I am not COMPLAINING about the hard. I'm rather observing it as a part of this experience. I'm not asking for advice. I'm not breaking down. I'm just being real cause there's one part of my identity I don't have to lose here although sometimes it's tempting cause I don't want everyone all worried. Hard isn't bad. It's just HARD.
Anyone you know who's moved overseas... It's hard. They probably need that vacation or the massage because it's really hard to change your whole life in one swoop. A few months ago I was an extremely do it myself independent homeschooling Texas girl loving life in the suburbs. Today I am an expat mom of four full time private schoolers in the middle of a massive city I can't even begin to describe to you and I can not drive or talk. It's not bad. It's good but it's not ever easy. Word on the street is that it does get easier at some point.
So there's the real deal.