So, I just got one of those reports that shows who, if anyone, is reading your blog. That took me into reading a few entries and recognizing that it's been a really long time since I've written (like that's new?) and realizing that I still have this strange fear that someday the ability to write is going to go away. Random thoughts.
This week, little miss Kathryn started "real" school for the first time. She'll be 5 in a few weeks and started what is called Reception here. It's like kindergarten but they stay in school all day. I told her I was very excited for her but kind of sad too. She smiled up at me and said, "Because you'll miss me, won't you." And I do. This week she goes just half day to get used to it and then next week she gets to take lunches to school. Then she'll be gone all day long. Mixed feelings. I got 'em.
This coincides with me beginning a new "career" as early morning seminary teacher. Yes. Me. Teaching teenagers. Old Testament. Early in the morning. Should be quite an adventure. I think what I'm most anxious about is what to wear. I'm supposed to be in church-type clothes. I need to go shopping.
Which brings me to another topic of random tangenting. Shopping here. I'm still not really that sure what I'm doing. I've got the whole food thing down now with what to buy where, but buying basic things like rubbish bins or shelf liner sort of eludes me. I had an ace in the hole with my American friend Stephanie because she's a born shopper. I swear within three months of moving here she knew where to go for what and more importantly, how to get there. And, she too has a deep and abiding devotion to Costco. What could be better?
It could be better if she were staying.
Stephanie is leaving me. Well, not me personally, but England. Her husband is taking a job in Seattle and, like any good wife, she is going with him. They leave at the end of September. I feel like a gigantic piece of security has been ripped out of me. She knows my culture. She laughs at funny things I say. Having her here is like having one of my sisters here, and that's a huge compliment considering that my sisters are some of my very best friends. Having her leave is like losing family. I love my English friends but sometimes things get lost in translation. I will miss her terribly.
Speaking of family, my mom and nephew came to visit at the beginning of August. We had almost three weeks together. It was wonderful! It was so good to wake up every morning and talk to my mom, for her to be in my house and meet my friends and see some of England. After we took them to the airport I cried almost all of the way home. I was numb. I think I was in shock. I stared out the car window thinking, "What have I done?"
I am starting to understand what I left behind. Not that I wouldn't do it again of course, because there was no other choice I could make. I just really, really miss being around people who know me really well and who really, really like me and who I feel secure with. I want to have the same sense of connectedness and shared experience with my family here that I have with my family there.
One experience that made it very clear was when I walked into the boys' room one evening and my nephew and one of our sons were playing a video game. Without thinking, I threw my arms around my nephew and kissed the top of his head and told him I loved him. He hugged me back and said he loved me too and went on playing. I looked over at our son and realized that we weren't at the stage yet where I could do that with him and he wasn't to the stage where he could say he loved me, either. I felt sort of lonely and sad. I had to figure out that I've known my nephew his whole life--17 years--and that my son has only known me for about two. I think time is the only thing that will make this better and unfortunately, I haven't ever been a patient person.
I am fine. I feel better already. Life does go on and there are changes happening all the time. Life is good and I'm in the right place.
Now if only we could get the kitchen finished...