Greg and I have been expats for just over 20 years and it’s been a rollercoaster of a journey.
We’ve had some incredible experiences, seen the world, we have the most amazing friends scattered across the globe but for me my expat chapter is closing. I’m tired of fighting languages, being so far from home, weird food, foreign traditions and then having to deal with this when things aren’t going well at home just compounds them. It rips me apart inside that I can’t be with some of the people I love the most in the world when they need that extra support, love and hugs and extra cuddles. I’m exhausted. The last 12-18 months has particularly highlighted this for me and the past 6 months even more so.
An expatriate (often shortened to expat) is a person residing in a country other than their native country.
We’ve missed so many Christmas’s, birthdays, weddings, arrivals of nephews, anniversaries, saying final goodbyes and the list just goes on. At what point do you go “That’s enough, we need to go home?”, how do you make that decision when you have two 5 year olds that only ever know Switzerland as home. Living almost 30 hours by plane away from where your nearest and dearest are sucks.
I’m absolutely f’ing petrified about making that jump back down under, I have no idea of how the logistics will work, how I’ll cope with the exceptionally bad internet (lol), how long it will take; I’ve lived in Europe for more than half my life. The time has come for me to come home though. I’m exhausted - physically and mentally, I just don’t think I can do it for any longer.
The last 6 or 7 years have had some amazing ups but some incredible downs. Which just reinforce this decision.
I don’t regret our decisions buts its time to find a nice house with a garden and swimming pool in suburban Australia and start the next chapter. I’ll miss European life, I’ll miss our friends but it’s time to come home.
Now the hard part… How do I convince the rest of the family it’s the right thing to do?