It's probably about time I give you an update on how things have been here in Germany. It's been almost three months now (we'll reach the official 3 mark month on the 25th of November) and a lot has happened in that time.
Firts of all, we're going to stay in the furnished short-term rental for a while longer. I've mentioned that finding a permanent place has been a struggle and this is still the case. But at this point in time, I don't mind. We've settled in here and we like it. The neighbours are amazing people, we're close to shops and the train station, and there are some pretty great parks in the area too. With the idea that we're staying here, the knot in my stomach has loosened. It's less stressful when you're not constantly worrying about where you're going to move to next.
Overall, we're adapting.
We're learning more of the language every day, especially Jan. We're learning more about how things are done here too, a fact that helps more than you realise. The weather hasn't gotten us down yet and I don't mind the constant rain at the moment. I like gloomy weather! Haha! Jan is doing good at work, because he knows the people now and understands how things are done.
Kayla is adapting well. In fact, she's probably come off the move better than her parents did. She's made a friend or two and we've tried to keep her routine as normal as possible, which helps. She's also used to the daylight-savings thing now, so she wakes up at a normal time in the morning again. :P
I'm OK. Everyone we talked to who have made this kind of move told us that the first three months are the worst. I'm experiencing that now. It's not that I think we made a mistake in coming, please don't misunderstand. I would move again, so confident am I that we did the right thing. It's amazing knowing that my child is not only safe, but she has the world at her feet. Even now, I won't go back to South Africa. Germany is my home.
Having said that, I've been missing the people we left behind more with every passing day. The best way to describe what I'm feeling is probably 'abandonment'. It's been tough. The longer we've been away, the more people started to go on with their lives, as they should. I really don't expect anyone to sit waiting by the phone for me to call. :P
But it has been difficult, especially for a social animal like myself. In South Africa, we knew where to go to make new friends. We don't have that luxury here. Even though we've met some new people, it hasn't been as easy to form friendships as it was in SA.
This means that I feel cut off at the moment. I'm not saying that to upset anyone. I honestly wouldn't have said anything at all, because I've always been the kind of person to retract into my own shell when I get down. I like to deal with things on my own and I don't like people worrying about me. I've just realised that writing about it would be good, for two reasons.
The first reason is that writing helps me cope. It helps me clear my mind and focus.
Secondly, the German Chronicles have actually helped some people understand some of the things involved in immigration. If I can help someone prepare when it comes to make a move like this, I feel it's my duty to do that. I read a ton of blogs about moving to another country before I took the leap and it helped me prepare.
Here's what I miss. I miss my mom popping in for coffee because she was in the area. I miss the sound of my father in law's woodworking tools in the garage. I miss my mother in law's cooking and chatting around the kitchen table. I miss the way my father bent to Kayla's every whim, carrying her around the house even when his shoulders ached.
I miss shopping and coffee shops with Liani, eating, laughing and crying about everything. I miss laughing from the pit of my stomach at one of Rita's outrageous stories while she has a cigarette in her garden. I miss doughnuts at Lizanne's dining table while the kids bumble around our feet.
I miss my cousins. I'm missing the feeling of a little life in my arms, with baby eyes looking up at me. I miss my aunts, whose homes were always open to us at any given time.
I miss Cupcake taking up an outrageous amount of space on the bed, between Jan and me. I miss the lady at Checkers who scanned my items and made small talk with me as I paid. I miss going to church and being hugged by the people we've grown to know there.
They say the first three months are the worst. So a week more and then it'll get better. :D I'm still an optimist, folks. I believe it can only go up from here. But I'll never stop missing.
Hope you have a good one!