Well, as you can probably tell from the blog, life got really busy in May. I’m not sure if it is the measure of a successful expatriation that you suddenly find yourself so caught up in your new life that you stop viewing it from the outside and writing about it, or whether I’m lazy and when something had to give (the alternative title I considered for this blog) this blog was it. Guess which I’m going with! Just call me Super Expat!
So here I am, more or less six months past the date of my last blog, and five years after the Facebook conversation that changed my life and this is where we are now:
I HAVE A JOB!! I am now the Deputy Treasurer at our local city hall. It has been a little strange getting used to different banking systems and different money, but I get to meet lots of people (sadly usually when they are paying bills) and my colleagues are really great. It is a big pay cut compared to the UK, which was quite a shock, but the hours suit me and I can walk to work.
JT’s eldest daughter graduated high school and moved to Madison to pursue a design degree.
My sister visited us for July 4th on her way to Laura Palooza and we had a lovely couple of days wishing America a Happy Birthday.
We took part in GISHWHES again as it was rumored to be the last one and I was lucky enough to have an item suggestion chosen, thus in my mind achieving enough people world-wide completing a task I had set them, to be able to tick “world domination” off my list of life goals. It was a proper Team Trumbley effort too as all three children and one dog took part ,and I even managed to drag my new boss at work into it.
I celebrated half a century, and if you follow me on Instagram you will have seen that I am committed to trying 50 New Things in My 50s as a way of keeping myself out of a rut, pushing myself to experience expat life in ways large and small, and also as a way of achieving some more of my life goals. For my birthday with visited Madison to see JT’s eldest and also to get a better view of the eclipse, while we were there we went to the free zoo.
Also in August I became a full time step-mum. After many months and a lot of paperwork, JT’s middle child had his request granted by his mum and confirmed by the courts, to come live with us to take advantage of a broader science curriculum at our local school. High school has been an education (no pun intended) given that everything I knew was based on loving The Breakfast Club as a teen, but he is settling in and starting to do well.
We celebrated Halloween with a Haunted Hayride and new pumpkin designs and Thanksgiving more quietly with a huge chili and family movie binges.
I struggled with being an expat for a little while, which apparently is a common thing at about a year and a half in. Being constantly reminded of being different I am, now I was working and meeting so many more people, and seeing less of JT with his night shifts, than I did on Skype from England, took it’s toll and I experienced a lot of self doubt. We talked, and I cried, our way through it, and as we celebrate our fifth anniversary I feel we are stronger than ever.
Right now we are planning Christmas, decorating the house and preparing for the arrival of JT’s eldest and her boyfriend who are staying with us while they save up for an apartment and she transfers up to NMU.
Our next challenge is the paperwork to extend my green card, and that is partly what has prompted me to come back to my blog, as it is the next stage of the visa process that I need to talk about.
Gone Girl is a 2014 thriller which I absolutely loved, based on a book by the same name. It tells the story of a husband and wife’s publicly blissful, marriage, which is revealed to be something entirely different when the wife disappears. (In case any one is worried I’m referring the disappearance not the marriage in using this for my blog title!)