My fiance and I live in the US, and are talking about whether or not this is the best place to raise our future children. So we have been trying to find out about other countries that might be a better fit for us. I know that no country is perfect, but there’s got to be a place better suited for us than here. I want to hear from people who live in different countries. What are your countries values, social norms, government and financial systems like? What are the pros and cons about living in your country?
Community wisdom holds that the three most stressful life events that a couple can undertake are changing jobs, moving, and death. For us, repatriation combined the first two major stressors while throwing in several others, making our first year back in the US a very tumultuous transition. When the customs officers welcomed us “home,” it felt like our idea of home had shifted from holding an endless sense of wonder to embodying a stack of drudging responsibilities. The towering mound of laundry only served as a physical reminder of this loss, and we were sulking. But, through trial and effort, we seem to have hit on a reasonable set of guidelines for building up the sense of self we both felt we lost, while investing in each other.
Living abroad is great for so many reasons. Meeting new people, experiencing new adventures, and learning about new cultures are just a few of the perks of moving every few years. However there are difficulties with everything being new again and again. And one of those difficulties is the feeling of having a “home.”
One day I was at work and I got a text message from my partner that said something like, “Let’s move to Indonesia and get jobs as teachers!” And I was like, “Riiight, okay, right after we hit the lottery. Nice dreaming, though.” Four months later, we were living and working in Jakarta!
Other than my spectacles, wallet, and watch-type stuff, what can’t I miss when I move overseas?
I’ve never been one to amass collections of anything. I’ve moved…a lot. A lot a lot a lot; over 30 times before moving out after high school a lot. But selling everything I owned to move across the planet was still jarring.
You know how most of the time people write tip lists it’s like nine things that are so obvious anyone could write the list, and then one maybe-useful idea? Katie’s list of ways to ease international moves is not that type of list. It’s like years of experience compacted down for the newbie.