When husband and I got married, it was either jump on a plane and move to South Korea, or wait another 6 months to get our life started. There was no way I was waiting. I had never really thought of travel, or living in other countries before but I was excited. Nervous, but excited.
A little over a month after we got married, there I was, at the airport, with my mother and best friend. It was the most odd feeling I had ever had. I am getting on an airplane to be with a man (I had married, duh, but only had known for a little over 6 months), in a country I had never even thought of.
It took a little while for the "homesick-ness" to kick in. A few months. Then, my birthday hit. December 24, 2010. I lost it, I went into a crying fit that seemed to last for days. It was rough. My very first birthday and holiday season I went through away from the regular family members that I had spent it with for the last 22 years of my life! It was the weirdest feeling. I didn't have my "birthday" at noon, there wasn't any Palt for dinner... There weren't many gifts exchanged (I know, that's not what's important!! But, it's the whole thing all together), and I didn't have to hear a certain portion of the bible being shoved down my throat... and it just wasn't the same at all.
Eventually I got used to the feeling, but, all the while I was in S.Korea I was down and out. Pretty darn depressed. After the "new-ness" of living in a different country wore off (approx. three months in), it all really sunk in, the depression I mean. I had great friends there, but I just couldn't get used to it at the time. I had always thought of myself being a great "away from mom" kind of kid! Then I really thought about it, even when I lived on Campus at PSU and rarely saw my mom in a 6 month period of time... We were calling each other all the time! Talking for hours on end. It was different in S.Korea because the only way I had to contact my mom was through Skype. That just didn't work out the best for us, my mom is awesome at forgetting her password. lol. So chatting with mom was spotty. It was rough, especially for someone like me, who talked to their mom almost daily.
Fast forward >>>>>>
In April 2011, we got to go back home for a short period of time, visit family, and get my shit together to move to Germany. It was really nice to be able to see them, but it was too short of a time. We felt stretched too terribly thin trying to see everyone who wanted to see us. Stressful.
It was great being in Germany, travel, blah blah blah. Of course I was keeping myself busy, but then the three month mark hit, and I broke down again. I remember, we were doing a mini road trip and I just got to thinking. I missed my freaking friends! I was so down and out after that for a while until I just suddenly got over it.
That was, until husband deployed in May 2012, and I missed my mom. She was supposed to visit in August 2012, but it didn't get to happen. I cried and cried and cried. I was so disappointed and so very lonely. No one has come to visit me in Germany yet, and I really wanted people to. Especially while husband was off doing his duty in Afghanistan. Especially then. *sigh*
During that time, I realized... People grow, and we grow apart too. It's so hard to keep up with people back home, time difference, busy lives, lives continue... They continue whether I am there or not. I've come to be in peace with living away from friends and family back in Oregon, and THANKFULLY I have a land line here in Germany that I can call back to the states for no additional fee. I call my mom every weekend and we talk for hours. It's definitely one of my favorite parts of the week.
All in all, I've gotten used to not seeing family, and it may sound harsh... but I refuse to take the trip back home. The airplane ride is just too expensive and we have a dog to think about now. We can't just pay for him to go back and forth, or to pay for him to stay at a kennel (too sad, I can't do the kennel thing), both are ridiculously expensive. Honestly, I want my family to visit HERE. I would rather HELP them pay to come here than get my butt on a flight back there. Oregon is Oregon, it will always be there, but I wont always be here in EUROPE. I wish more of my friends and family back "home" would realize this. It's a great opportunity for them.
I must say, if you're a military spouse and you don't want to move to another country because your family isn't there... You're really missing out. If your family is any good, they will understand the amazing opportunity you have in the palm of your hand, and encourage you to go! And if they're a really amazing family, they will come and visit you.
Traveling will change you. For the better. Living abroad will change you. You will learn so much about yourself, your capabilities and about other people and cultures.
Take the opportunity! There's no way you could regret it. I wouldn't give this opportunity up for anything!