After missing the December link up because I was so blummin busy (hence the unscheduled blog absence!) I’m so pleased to be able to get involved in the Trailing Spouse Stories blog crawl with D for Delicious and Tala again. This month’s theme is all about starting over in a new country.
This January we talk about beginnings. We all were there at some point in time. We all started out in strange lands. How was it like starting over in a new country – if you have done it multiple times, does it get easier or harder? And what are you building in this new year?
It’s now nearly 2 years since I upped sticks, jumped on a plane and left good old Blighty behind for a life in the United States of America with the German. At the time, a whole load of thoughts and emotions were running through my mind. Everything from will I like it there to oh my gosh I’m so excited and what if I’m really, really homesick?
It was very daunting to get on that plane, knowing that I was leaving everything and everyone I knew behind, giving up everything to move 4,000 miles away to a new country I’d only ever visited on holiday but I was also excited for all the new adventures and experiences that were in store.
We landed in Atlanta and the new life began. The first few weeks were spent sorting. We had to find an apartment, furniture, buy 2 cars and find a new circle of friends meaning they passed in a blur. It was also the time when I started blogging and documenting my new life abroad. Eventually, we got everything sorted and started to explore our new surroundings more, instead of the many furniture stores and car showrooms!
I was worried about how much I would miss my family and friends, but, thanks to the delights of modern technology, that homesickness wasn’t as bad as I thought. FaceTime means I can see their faces whenever I want and for free. Seeing somebody’s face and talking to them as if you are in the same room is so much easier than just hearing a voice or writing a letter. Apps like WhatsApp and social media means I can keep up to date with everything that’s happening back home and what everyone’s up to. The thing I miss the most though is the hugs and the popping out for a coffee or shopping. Those are the things you take for granted, until they’re taken away from you. I miss seeing my goddaughter grow up, every time I see her she’s so much bigger than the last time, but that’s what you sign up for when you become an expat. You know what you’re leaving behind and how things will change.
The last 2 years have been a roller coaster ride that has been out of this world. I’ve visited places I never thought I would get to see, slotted into a life I never thought I’d lead in a country I thought I would only visit on holiday. I’ve had so many new experiences that have definitely changed me as a person and right now, I couldn’t imagine life to be any different.
Yes, it’s tough, waving goodbye to your loved ones to head to a new country, and, 2 years on, that never gets any easier. There are tears every time I leave after another visit home or when friends and family come to visit us here in Atlanta. But, this move has been life changing and I am so glad we did it. It’s the experience of a lifetime and, when it’s offered to you, something you cannot refuse. I wouldn’t change anything for the world, well, apart from seeing those faces back home a little bit more!