Life's a Beach: The Ups & Downs of Expat Living.

Living in England means I can travel to Italy 
several times throughout the year
on a budget that is anything less than luxurious.

Living in England means
I can be a ten minutes walk 
from Kensington Palace...
and that much closer to becoming 
best friends with Kate Middleton.

Living in England means
I get to dress my baby in Baby Zara.

Living in England means
I get to wander Notting Hill's Portobello Road
ever single day and still be enchanted 
by the colorful houses & stalls of aged wares.

But living in England also means
that I'm far away from home...
and that we live, as expats, in a transient society.

People come for a few years
to work or study,
and then, it seems, 
that they leave in waves.

Right now, we are in one of those times
where it seems like life is pulling our friends
back out to the lives 
where they originally came from
and our community is washed down
like a sand castle by the tide.

image via

This month, we are saying goodbye to several of our friends here
and also the two expat bloggers that I've spent my time abroad with:

I'll be honest,
as excited as I am to see our friends so happy 
for theses new chapters of life,
it kinda sucks to start over.

When I arrived at college 
and was feeling the standard freshman awkwardness
of the gap of loneliness that happens
when you leave your high school friends,
but are yet to make your college friends.

My friend, Amanda, was a sophomore at the time,
told me that her freshman year,
she asked God to give her just one person for that day
to help her feel less lonely.

So that's what I decided to do,
and over a few weeks & months,
those small interactions became friendly faces
and then those friendly faces became friends...
and by Christmas, 
I had more friends than I knew what to do with.

So when we moved to England,
I did the same...
and, again, God was good
and brought some ridiculously sweet, smart & talented people 
into our lives.

When you live abroad with family far away,
your community of friends 
becomes like family to you.

When our babies were born,
our little group of friends rallied
in a way that made us feel so loved.

I'll always be thankful that our lives were so full of dear friends at that time.

image via

Now as it begins to drain back down
I can only wonder what new, wonderful friends 
the tide of relocation & expatriotism will bring our way.

It can be lonely.
It can be awkward...
but it always shakes out to be okay, doesn't it?

I think so, too.

Posted on June 26, 2013 and filed under "blog world", "friends", "life".