Posts Tagged ‘Expat Families’

A pleasant sad surprise

Tuesday, July 24th, 2012

Why does it take a minute to say hello and forever to say goodbye?

I’m always saying how one of the downsides to raising Third Culture Kids is that they have a hard time forming bonds. I feel like my kids, especially my daughter who is 9, watch people come and go so much that they ‘ve learned not to get attached. In a way this helps with all the goodbyes, but on the other hand I think it’s healthy to be sad when people leave and long to see them again.

I’ve even mentioned this as one of my reasons for wanting to make sure my daughter goes to high school in the States. I feel like there’s a bond that gets formed coming in as freshmen and leaving as seniors. Not to say that it’s the only way, it’s just what I remember as my strongest feelings of attachment outside the home. Until this day, I still wonder, worry and hope the best for my high school classmates. Friends and family have reminded that every person is different – there are people who hated high school and I keep that in mind as my daughter’s personality continues to develop.

So, on the last day of school I had a great shock as we were leaving when I saw not one, not two, but a whole bunch of kids sobbing. At first I thought it was for some sad news that they all must have learned, and then it dawned on me – this is the last day of school and some of them won’t be coming back next year. Add that to the fact that many of them leave immediately after school ends to spend summer vacation abroad and this means goodbyepossibly forever.

I don’t know, this experience has thrown a wrench in my thinking. Obviously, my friends and family are right in that it just depends on the person and his/her personality. I’m not going to assume that placing my daughter in a situation where I was able to form bonds will do the same for her. I also have to keep in mind that people show attachments in different ways.

What do you think?

I woke up and it was Wednesday

Monday, February 27th, 2012

This is what happens when my children are on vacation (you know I still find it odd to write that I have “children” – plural – when did THAT happen?! But, I digress…)

I get sucked into some sort of time vortex where:
Calendar
1) I wake up at 6 AM even though there is NO reason to – besides feeding them breakfast because their tummies stay on school day schedule

2) Days last a lot of hours or too few, depending on how I look at it. If it’s time spent breaking up fights, preparing/planning meals, cleaning up after them, etc. – then it’s way too long. But, if it’s time spent doing the things I like to do (reading, writing, watching a good movie) then it lasts about 2.5 minutes

3) I go to sleep on a Sunday praying that I’ll get to stay in bed past 7AM the next morning and when I look at a calendar again it’s Wednesday

Woe is me, right? Beginning today I’ll get some peace and quiet during the day, but that comes at the lovely price of waking up at the inhumane hour of 5:45 AM. Another benefit, I’ll know what day it is and you know why…because I have to keep track of their extra-curricular activities and what time to pick them up and all that jazz. This.is.my.life. I really have to work on making more “me” time. It’s amazing how quickly time passes while doing stuff for other people. I’ve even put my Spanish classes on hold while I get a handle on my days. I know me and I need alone time to recharge or else I’m going to be useless. I’ll just add “balance my time” to the list of goals for 2012 – I’m big on check-off lists, so it WILL get checked.

In the meantime, any suggestions will be greatly appreciated!

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