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Archive for the tag “emigration”

I’m having a wobbly week

I know the “rule” is if you don’t have anything positive to blog about then don’t blog” but to hell with that, its MY blog (and its not like I haven’t already broken all the other blog rules).

I’m having a wobble. This whole week I’ve been really rattled and its an accumulation of things that probably seem small on their own but together are leaving me feeling very overwhelmed and unhappy.

My better half is scheduled to have major surgery at the end of October. Any kind of hospital stay has me rattled but more so being so far away from our families. This is the part of emigration I hate most! Its knowing you are absolutely on your own at the times when you most need your family to be there. We faced this 2 years ago when we were in hospital with the Diva – but then at least I had DH to lean on (and vice versa) and only one child to care for. Now I am scared about the operation. I’m worried that something will go wrong and DH wont wake up afterward – and I cant say so to him because he’s scared enough himself already. I don’t know how we’re going to manage with him being in hospital, me being at work and juggling both kids – and that’s just for the hospital stay, never mind the 6 weeks afterward where he’ll have limited mobility and not be allowed to drive. I need my mom and my sister and my father-in-law here, and all are either unable or unwilling to come (most unable – and validly so, but the unwilling is really upsetting).

Then there is just the constant battle, feeling like it doesn’t matter how hard we work or how much we earn we just never manage to get on top of things. Every time you feel like you’re getting ahead something breaks, or some urgent expensive need comes up 😦

And I’m tired of being the “fun police”. I’m tired of having to juggle all the accounts and say “no” to every single thing that would mean extra money. I’m tired of being responsible all the time. Its draining! I’m tired, I’m grumpy, I am gatvol.

I’m reminding myself that there are people out there who have it so much worse. And I’m doing what I can to get back to my happy place. But I am also allowing myself a large bowl of icecream and a good sulk.


How we ended up here

Image from Town & Country travel mag (

Post a day asked recently “how did you end up where you are now?” and I think its a decent question.

I grew up in South Africa, a gorgeous place full of wonderful, vibrant people. Unfortunately its also full of crime. Which is manageable when you’re a single adult and can look after yourself, but when we had children I felt a lot less safe, a lot more exposed. We weighed up the pro’s and cons of moving and decided that even though the sacrifices were many we needed to move somewhere safer.

We looked briefly into the UK (DH said “no.”), Canada (too long an immigration process), Australia (points system and we weren’t on any skills shortages lists) and then New Zealand. Out of them all NZ seemed to have the speediest immigration process so we popped over for 10 days of interviews, headed home, sold our house, packed our stuff and arrived back in NZ to start work 6 weeks later.

It was the right decision for us at the time and New Zealand has been very good to us – but we really miss having a good support system and living near family. We miss everyone more than we thought possible.

We’d like to do another 2 moves before our kids leave home, just because we can!

The next place we live will be within 40 or 50km’s of an immediate family member (preferably one we like). It will have a moderate climate, affordable housing, good schooling and be reasonably safe. It will have a reasonable cost of living relative to average income – I don’t want every month to be a struggle to pay for the bare essentials when we earn a good wage. Sounds like Utopia!

Day 27 → What’s the best thing going for you right now?

Day 27 → What’s the best thing going for you right now?

The best thing we have going for us right now is our move out of South Africa. Don’t get me wrong, there is a lot I miss about SA but moving countries has opened up a whole new world for us… and now that we’ve moved countries once I might like to do it another couple of times, just for the experience.

We’ve been exposed to a new country, new climate, new culture and we’ve had to make it on our own with no support system in place. And it’s been crazy and exciting and scary and wonderful all at once. We plan to stay here at the very least until I have citizenship (DH and the kids have British & Irish passports but I only have an SA passport and would like a 2nd option) and then we may find another interesting country to live in for a couple of years. Maybe even a non-English speaking country 🙂

Thank heavens for Skype

Emigration is lonely, lonely, lonely. You don’t realise how much your support system – family & friends – mean to you until you cant see them. You know you’ll miss them but the enormity of it doesn’t sink in until you’ve moved and the novelty of the new country/home/job has worn off.

Its worst on special occasions, birthdays, anniversaries, christmas. For christmas this year we had a Skype conference call with my sister in L.A and my mom in the UK.

It’s not the same, but I am still very grateful for Skype video calling! Its Friday evening here and I just spent an hour talking to my sister in the US where it is Thursday evening – we usually video call and then carry on with whatever we need to do, chatting as we do it. So this evening she was working in Photoshop, giving a visiting friend directions and printing Vinyl (she’s super talented!) and I was rocking DestructaBoy to sleep, entertaining the Diva and having a cuppa.

It was nice to just chat – even though I wish we could share a meal and talk all night. Anyway, I took a sneaky Skype pic while she was on, so here she is…

P.s Loving the cleavage La!

Guest post on Female2Female

So, I was asked to write a guest post for Female2Female, a South African website with blog posts/articles written by women for women – and after only 2 weeks of having a blog! Can you tell I’m stoked?

So, here’s an excerpt and a link to the full post…

“When Laura asked me to write this post my first thought was “yay, my first guest blog post!” and my second thought was “uh oh, this could open a can of worms”.

See she’d asked me to write about emigration which is a contentious subject, particularly among South Africans. A lot of countries have a relaxed attitude to migration, its something that’s expected and encouraged. But when a South African migrates its seen as a judgement on those who have chosen to stay, and likewise those who choose to stay are seen to be making a judgement about those who choose to leave.”

Read the rest here

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