You’d think that after moving to a developing country with 4 kids and 10 suitcases, every other move would seem easy, but you’d be surprised by how difficult doing the reverse has been so far.
Now that 2/5 plane tickets have been booked and almost all loop holes/excuses in my plan are patched up, I fantasize about taking a flame thrower to my house here, walking out the door and getting this part over with. Unfortunately, I own neither a flame thrower nor this house, so purging and packing is what I get to do, each day, every day.
Not just regular packing, but going through each individual item of stuff we own, holding it up into the light and asking “Is this item worthy of precious space in 1 of our 10 suitcases we’re moving with? How easily can this be replaced in the US?”
Each sock, each kid drawing, each pencil and kitchen gadget… our entire household into the equivalent of a sardine can.
It’s treacherous, exhausting and rates right below quantum physics on the complexity scale. To add insult to injury, each corner of the house I manage to empty just stares back at me blankly, rather than feel like something I’ve accomplished.
And then there is the beginning of all the “last time’s”. The bug guy who has been coming here every month for years just left…. for the last time. Friends have come to visit and are leaving…. for the last time. The girls are turning 11 this weekend, a birthday here…. for the last time.
*insert the sound of a giant band-aid being ripped off slowly*
I can’t help think that we’ll miss all the stuff that’s been inconveniencing us for the past 9 years, such as the frequent power outages and the subsequent dinners by candle light. The empty shelves in the grocery store because the weekly supply boat hasn’t arrived yet. I’ll surely miss knowing that if our car breaks down, someone will stop within minutes, taking us to the car parts store or calling their cousin who is a mechanic. And just the other day the girls asked if I think we’ll have another hurricane before we leave ’cause they’re in the mood to eat all the lobster and ice cream in the fridge.
Ultimately, I’m worried moving to a place with readily available ____ (insert anything, available 24/7) will make us forget how much fun we had coping with inconveniences and learning to be resourceful. I’m afraid the kids will forget how to play without toys and playgrounds and that they’ll no longer get the freedom to talk to strangers. And as excited as I am for them to learn about life in the “civilized” World, I’m worried they’ll no longer find joy in simple things like dancing in the rain because they’re so excited to own their 1st umbrella ever.
Last week I went on my final house hunting trip to Greenville and to my horror, less than a handful of houses were available, none of which we got. And as much as I’d like to give into this panic and call the whole thing off, I try to remind myself of all the stupid ideas in my past that had “slim-to-none” odds of working out…..
Like moving to a tiny Caribbean island with 4 kids and 10 suitcases.