We have – just today – crossed the one year mark of our repatriation life. I rewatched the video we made when we moved into our apartment. So, I survived snow, ice, and bare trees of the Winter. Then I enjoyed crisp, sunny days of Spring and warm, green trees and colorful flower days of Summer. Finishing out with Fall and its amazing color changes of the trees.
I nurtured new friendships that I know will last for life. Together we tried new restaurants, saw some live concerts, explored several events at the Missouri Botanical Garden, and enjoyed indoor arena football. With them, I visited the Lake of the Ozarks and two wineries.
In looking back over the year, what I did most was travel. I visited friends from our time in Abu Dhabi, who have also recently repatriated. I was ‘homesick’ for them, so those trips were the boost my heart needed. Thankfully we have mobile phones, Skype, Facebook and other social media outlets. But nothing replaces in-person hugs, laughing, and conversations over lovingly-prepared meals.
Here I am, a new gull (nod to Jonathan Livingston Seagull) with new friendships and goals, and proud of all the things I’ve learned in a year. I can almost get to places and back home without the use of my Waze app. Side note: I have the Waze voice set to Boy Band, so I use it even if I know how to get home because it’s so funny to hear the guy sing to me, “¯turn left.”
I am very grateful for this new place: my husband enjoys his new job and we are comfortable in our new home. I miss the beach, the ocean and the daily sunshine of the coastal cities I’ve lived in for the past thirty-two years. I am making the most of each day: I explore, exercise and cook great meals now too!
If you find yourself unsettled in your repatriation life, you’re not alone. It may be easy for some, but not for all. Give yourself time; be gentle, playful, easy and graceful.
Cheers to new adventures and lives of meaning in 2018. What new adventures do YOU have planned for 2018?
Author: Denise Schnitzer
Denise Schnitzer is a prolific writer, traveler, and adventurer. Her explorations have taken her to 38 countries and four continents, so far. Since starting her blog in 2011, www.alohadenise.com, she has posted over 1,200 entries. As an adventurer, she enjoys exploring each new city, hiking, teaching yoga on the beach, scuba diving and sand trekking. Considering herself happy, blessed and grateful, her daily mantra is: HAVE FUN EVERY DAY.🎈