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Monday, October 3, 2011

15 months in Finland.

Time for another letter to America!!  To give an update on how things are going in the old world.  It's been 15 months since the boat arrived at the harbor... or I guess when our Finnair flight hit the ground in Helsinki.  A lot has truly taken place since...

The move itself.  Getting an apartment, and trying our first little jumps and hops, like a babybird learning how to fly, in a new country.  Starting to build a new house.  Starting a new business.  New schools, language, Dr's, blah blah blah....
We moved again, and now live in the house we started building, the new company is growing roots, things are picking up. 
A new baby is on the way.
The kids have a year of school here stuffed in their backpacks of life.

Lately there have been many things happening back in Canada and USA.  Some friends of mine are expecting babies right around the same time as I.  I'd love to "grow big" along side with them.  I miss them.  A dear friend has moved on to eternity, and she'll be missed.  One of my dear sister-in-laws won't be my sis-in-law much longer... and that hurts, but she know's she'll always be my special L.  I wish I could be there for many reasons at times.  I get "homesick" for people.  Sometimes for places too, but not much.  I don't miss "stuff", I miss people.

Here I have laid the ground work for new friendships.  Looking back in my life, I realize that I've "started new" many many times.  Becoming a new friend to someone does not scare me.  I love meeting new people, and I find that everyone is interesting in their own way.  One thing I miss here is my ability to talk to anyone I want to.  I like to talk to old ladies, but here the language barriare slows me down a lot.  Very frustrating at times.  After learning Swedish growing up, and now also being fluent in English, makes the road of learning Finn seem very long and bumpy at times.  (I know how much work is involved in becoming equally fluent in 2 languages)  I'm not 18 anymore either... The age I was when I spent 2 months in USA and learned English. 

Now I'm mostly at home during the weeks, so the opportunities to use Finnish are sometimes far in between.  Lately I've been to some "in home sales" parties.  Great chance to practice Finn!  And to listen to the person presenting their products.  I actually "get it" every now and then.  Finn  is very different from most languages, so it's not like it "sounds like" or resembles any of the common Europeean languages either (which would greatly help me out).  So.  I struggle.  And I'm taking small steps forward. 
At least I can relate to how the kids feel!  They are fortunately catching on faster than their mom thou...

We are going through our 2nd fall here, and it's interesting to experience the seasons change for the 2nd time.  I'm curious and a bit scared to see if this February will be as cold as last one.  Will we still have tons of snow at the end of March?  Right now the trees are all dressed in sparkling colors, but their gowns are falling rapidly.  Soon we'll hit that gray November... and I'll be looking forward to snow to brighten up the days.  It's already getting dark quite early, and it's only getting darker.  We are planning to spend Christmas at home.  I hope I have energy to bake all the traditional Christmas goodies, and spend the holiday relaxing in front of the fireplace.

So... the latest review of life here??  It's good.  I still like the fact that things are so close.  I still don't miss crossing the international border crossing between Windsor and Detroit.  I don't miss Detroit traffic, and my hubby stuck in it on the way home from work... We have seen each other a lot more this year, and that was one of our goals.  The kids are adjusting, and they seem happy over all.  Of course they miss their friends and realtives over there, just like I do!  But you'll always miss somebody... especially when your family live very spread out!  But as long as we are content in the moment, and with what we have each day, those things become easier to handle. 

Some people ask if we are staying here, we originally talked about living here for 2-3 years.  Some people said before we moved "Oh, you'll be back here in 2 years!" others predicted we won't come back at all.  (besides for visits)  At this point I think we are staying here for many years to come.  1st of all, I'm not interested in uprooting and moving our kids every few years, especially since moving back to where we used to live would not be an option.  So if we moved back, it would be starting new all over again, in a new city etc.  Does not sound appealing right now.  Some of the reasons that made us move in the 1st place, we really would miss moving back, and why "fix" something if it's not broken??
I like to tell the kids that this is where we live now, feel free to root yourself.
If they knew that "We might be moving back in 2-3 years", would they dare to fully spread their wings and embrace all the new?  And then after a few years, we aren't able to move back, and they feel disappointed? 

I don't know if there is a "right or wrong" way to do a big life change like this, but being honest makes it easier.  And I couldn't honetly tell them "in 2 or 3 years this or that will happen!"  That's impossible! 
Who knows what will happen in the next few years??  Besides, then our oldest kids will be in highschool, and highschool here and overseas is very different, so the older the kids are, the harder a move would be.

2 years ago it seemed very strange to move here.  I was almost due with our youngest, and our overseas plans were just starting to gain momentum.  So much have happened since then, and I guess time will tell how this move has changed our lives for better and worse.  I like to look at the good stuff thou, and so far, so good!  I realize that giving a timeline for a move like this is really quite pointless (unless you move on a one or two year work visa, where your company helps you with the moving costs, and you plan on returning to your old place, that's different).  We sold our house, brought all our belongings with us, my husband quit his job... so after cutting all the ties like that, it's a lot more work going back.

So.... now you know where that stands!  I guess we are Finns now!  :)

5 comments:

Sofia L said...

"We are Finns now..." Yeah, sis... back to our roots. It's still kinda wierd to think that YOU of all us 10 actually MOVED to Finland. Hehehe. Yup, but I like having you closer - just need to book a ticket, I guess. ;)
Love hearing about your life "down south" and now there's only ONE hours' time difference. Goodie good! Love ya, and good luck with everything. God takes care of you always!

MeWoman said...

Well. My hubby is 100% Finn to start. I'm 75%. The kids, what?
82ish?? SO, really.... we didn't need to become Finns. We are also Canadian. The whole gang of us. And that's not a bad thing. And oh, I'm SWEDISH too!DUH!! The best part of me... maybe? :)

Sally M. said...

LOL!!!!! Putte will be PROUD that you called you a "FINN" j/k:-)))))

MeWoman said...

I can call Putte a Finn too, w/o lying! ;)

Sofia L said...

LOL! We ARE Finn! But don't forget the 25% Skåning! ;)

Sal, you may call Putte a Finn ANYTIME! You have our permission! :)