About being content. It seems like some people are surprised about me living in Finland. And liking it. I have lived in 5 different countries (some for brief times, but still), in 7 different cities or towns. Some really small towns and others rather large. I have learned new languages and cultures along the way. I have moved because of school, work, and marriage. And everywhere I've gone, I've always been with me. In some places I felt happier, some were more fun than others, but always, I was me. And every time I had a choice to make the best out of the situation. I have always known that, but maybe not always tried my best. You have to mature into the understanding of realizing that I can dare to do what's the best for me in each new situation. I can choose to be happy and content. Of course some surroundings, climates and friends will make this easier or harder to achieve, but if you are not happy with yourself and try to change the surroundings, you will have a really hard, never ending struggel ahead of you!!
If I complain about how "this or that" is SO different! HOW can they do that? Well.... Maybe that's how it's always been? They have never questioned the patteren, because everyone has been fine with the way things have been done. So what can I do if I'm not happy with it? One way is to try to see it through somebody elses eyes. To realize that things can be done in different ways. When I moved to Canada after getting married to Big Guy, some people wondered how I liked it, and I said I liked it just fine. Someone pointed out how fast I seemed to blend in, and I said that I felt it had been easier for me to change, rather than trying to change everybody else around me!
You might say "Yeah, but this one person that moved here tried to tell us how we should do this or that different, or how they didn't like anything, why don't they just move back to where they came from??" Well. It's still all about choices. You can always ask that person questions. Be curious. Don't jump to conclusions and think that "He or she is so negative!!". Have you walked in her shoes? What do you know of his background? Ask, "Where you lived before, how did they do......? Why do you miss....?
Also picture yourself moving to where the person came from. Would you do that?
It's never easy to uproot yourself, especially not when you have a family in tow, and sometimes I have to remind myself that our kids might not feel the way I feel about some things. I can't lay a protective blanket over them and tell them that they like something they don't! On the other hand, I can teach them tolerance, and remind them about the good and the bad in each situation. For our kids the language barrier is still the biggest hurdle, as it is for me. So at least we can relate on that one... And we know that as long as we get the yakking under control, we will be happy with most aspects about living here. Also, If you like it in one place doesn't mean that you don't miss or like it somewhere else.
I heard about some "live well" expert saying that it's not good to get attached. I'm not sure about what he was referring to exactly, but I felt that it hit home with me. I have one lifetime of opportunites, and one day I'm hoping that I can look back and think "I did this and that, and I'm thankful that I dared!" What's the point? Well, for me it hopefully means that I have learned something about myself along the way. And about others. And always remember that my own happiness starts within me. I can choose how I feel and how content I am with what I have at each moment!