Friday, October 26, 2012
I’m currently writing this new blog update from the comfort of my new home approximately 6000km away from the comfort of my previous home. I am not going to rehash how bad of a blogger I am, I mean really why re-state the obvious? I will just pretend that the 10,000 topics or more that I have thought of between my last entry and this one have actually made the journey from my brain to the cyber world and continue on my way.
I have also contemplated how one would go on catching up on so much crap that has happened in the past several months (I’d insert a more specific timeline here but I’ve lost count) and I’ve decided a quick version is the best. So here it goes: After several months of renovations, garage sales, packing and preparations, usually sans moi husband and avec moi crazy, rambunctious children we hauled all of our crap literally across the second largest country in the world. We barely got here and the hubby went MIA (or back to work so he says…btw honey it’s a joke so I don’t need to be reprimanded after you read this) and I spent the next month, with my very nice and amazing parents, unpacking and organizing. During this time my grandmother got very sick and ended up in the hospital. Unfortunately she went from living independently, then to us trying to find a long term care facility for her, to her passing away in the matter of two months. It was a rough go around. We moved all her belongings into my gigantic empty basement and sorted through the remainder of her belongings. My grandmother, not being as she would describe as a “go-go girl,” wishes included for us NOT to hold a funeral for her. Instead we decided we would have a family reunion in her honor (she would have loved that). The month following her passing then was held in planning and preparation to house the family and pay tribute to a woman who would have been able to carry it off single handedly in the past. Then to bring us up to the present moment the past week has been all about finishing up the final loads of laundry and clean-up after the reunion (which was truly lovely I might add) and now I have found myself in a position I have not been in for what feels like a millennium…
Depending on the hour of the day I might describe my current situation with thoughts such as “Freedom”, “Without Purpose”, “Bored”, “Relieved”, “Scared,” “Burnt Out,” “Drifting,” etc. Whatever it is that I’m feeling I know that I’m not used to having no plans or no stressors to put me on a path. I mean don’t get me wrong I’ve got mini goals and other basic daily functions that need to happen in order to maintain some semblance of order but to not have a HUGE stressor looming over my head is a weird feeling. My whole life has been filled with major projects or goals I want to achieve. My husband keeps trying to tell me to relax and enjoy it, more than ANYTHING in the world that’s what I’d like to do but I think it’s going to take some time. It’s hard to retrain your brain to just chill. So maybe that will be my goal, to learn how to slow down and savor the moment. That and try to spend some of that quality time with my children that we’ve missed out so much on because of us focusing on what’s to come. Ok so now are we caught up? Not really, well too bad, you’ll have to piece the rest together with my ramblings forth.
I would like to now point out a few strange experiences that can only come with moving to a town where you know basically no one. First experience is in regards to my daughter’s first day of preschool. The move was a bit of a disappointment for my 3 year old daughter. She was used to having tones of friends and people around that she knew and was used to. I mean of course she was excited to hang out with her Grandma and Poppa but after she realized that they were about as exciting as me (in other words “not very”) she was wondering where the other kids were. She began to name her toys after various friends we had left behind, she started talking to the wall and introducing me to her imaginary friends with strange names such as “Shada” or “Cunfringning”, she started spending an awful amount more time harassing her brother but then I had to draw the line after she started to kiss the leeches from the lake and claim them as her “best girls ever”. This is when I decided I should start looking into preschools so she would at least have a couple days a week where she could interact with some little, loud people other than her brother. Like a good mom I did a lot of research. I called several facilities to talk with their directors, I read reviews online, I asked questions of people such as my hairdresser and our friendly neighbors who had children that once went to some of the schools. Then I made the decision she would begin attending the Tuesday/Thursday morning classes of a particular program I liked the sound of (another good blog topic perhaps).
The first day of preschool started just as I’d imagined it would. We got her all dressed up in her new school clothes, took several pictures of her donned in her school backpack, both me and the hubby drove her to her first day and dropped her off. She did not give a second thought about us leaving and I surprisingly enough was ok with the drop off too. The weird experience actually didn’t come until after we went to pick her up to come home. We went in to pick her up, put our signature on the sign-out sheet, she came running out to us with a huge grin on her face, got her packed up and strapped into her car seat in the van. On the drive home both my husband and I excitedly grilled her asking several questions that resembled “What did you learn today?” and “Did you meet any friends and what were their names?” She said nothing. Then this is when the really strange feeling washed over me. It was the very first time I had left my daughter with virtual strangers, which didn’t struck me as odd because I had been mentally preparing myself for that, it was the fact I had zero idea what the last three hours for her held. She wasn’t telling me and the teachers, unlike a sitter or a friend watching her for the past three hours that would have dished out details, don’t have time to consult with every parent after a class unless something (usually memorable and bad) had happened. It dawned on me that this was the beginning of it. She was going to start coming home with stories, songs and ideas that I haven’t planted there and I may not be able to interpret. It was also going to be from people that I only had as much information on as Google and the few sources available to me could tell. It was a really scary feeling.
The second experience actually just happened to me a couple days ago and has now extended into tonight. For anyone who knows me I’m an extremely extroverted and outgoing person. I don’t usually run out of things to talk about and tend to enjoy meeting new people quite a bit. Since I’ve moved here I haven’t really had to be social in an unfamiliar group or friend like setting. I do have some really nice neighbors I was starting to be acquainted with but unfortunately they are moving just after Christmas to another country. I have to say though that I’m feeling quite out of practice.
On my husband’s last full day home before he was scheduled to head off for work we decided to go out and have some fun with the kids. My daughter had preschool so we went to drop her off first and then decided we would take our son to the park. You see it’s pretty tough on the little guy as he watches his sister disappear into a building that sports a tantalizing playground with kids laughing on the outside and a plethora of exciting looking toys on the inside. To lessen the blow I usually attempt to do something fun with him for the first half of our alone time together before trying to scratch some lines through my “to-do” list. We actually drove around to a few of the park options available in town but settled on the driest of the available selection. Upon arrival we realized that we weren’t alone. I in fact have not ever seen another human at this park prior to this so to me it seemed busy. There were construction workers doing what looked like some aesthetic maintenance to the playground portion and another father spending some quality time with his daughter. The father/daughter duo did not stay long as it was a little chilly out and they both looked as they had already been there for a while. However shortly after they left another group showed up consisting of two women and three children (actually two small kids, a girl and a boy looking to be the same ages of my girl and boy, and one small baby in a stroller). My son immediately proceeded to run up to the boy his age and stole the cookie out of his hand and began to eat it. After prying the cookie from my son and handing it back to the now crying boy I apologized. I then joked and said to the woman who I presumed to be the mom “Wouldn’t it be a strange world if I just walked up to you and stole the coffee out of your hand and said thanks for the coffee.” To which she replied “Yeah maybe next time could you hold on the sugar please?” I proceeded then to do what I always do best and talk way too much. To my surprise, but pleasure when they decided to leave the park she handed me her telephone number, told me of her schedule and said to call her if I wanted someone to hang out with. I had pretty much already told her my whole life story of the move, how I know absolutely no one here and blah blah blah. For my mother, who will eventually read this blog entry, this may come as a surprise, but I was actually a little nervous about talking to someone new. I mean you wouldn’t know it while I was spewing out my innermost secrets, several times I thought to myself “these people must think I’m a total loon and seriously desparate.” I also put a lot of thought in how exactly one makes the phone call starting with “Hey I’m the girl with the kids you met at the park the other day.” Back in the day I wouldn’t have thought twice but I was pretty nervous this time. I now know what it’s like for people who haven’t been dating for several years on the-how-to go-about-meeting people sort of thing. I wasn’t sure how I should start the conversation and how to not come across as being a total weirdo. It turns out when I did call was of course when she was super busy in the middle of getting her kids ready for bed but it definitely sounds promising and she was very gracious to note she was glad I called. For me it’s a weird experience because for the past 10 years I’ve not had to meet anyone new on my own, it’s usually been done in a group setting or through other friends and I have usually been the one introducing people. Maybe it’s good for me; maybe it’s time for me to step out of my comfort zone again. I mean how else do we grow?
Oh and a final note. Preschool finally was able to do with my daughter that I was never able to…potty train her. Apparently the need to “fit in” is greater than anything that a mom can ever offer, yay peer pressure!!