As you all know, we’ve recently moved from our home in Texas to live in England for a few years. When Colin got the job offer and we were discussing whether to take it, our children, of course, played a huge role in the conversation. How would it affect them? Would they easily adapt to all of the changes? Would they have a hard time with their new home? I have to tell you in all honesty, they are now helping me with the adjustment without even knowing what they’re doing.
My boys are only 1 and 3, so I can only speak to this young age group. We haven’t had to deal with older children who are leaving lifelong friends or high school sweethearts behind and I imagine that could result in a totally different outcome. I must say, though, that I am astounded by how well they’ve done. Ian, the three year old, has had a lot of questions, and they began as soon as we got off the plane and into our taxi. He noticed immediately that the driver was sitting on the “wrong” side of the car. Then it was the double decker buses, the fact that we were living in an apartment, and why his favorite shows weren’t on TV. The one year old has been absolutely enthralled with little things, like the switches on the electrical outlets and the fact that the washer is in the kitchen, right where he can reach it! But you know what? They’ve easily accepted all of the change.
I think it’s easy to forget how set we adults are in our own ways. While I’m struggling with finding cheese and BBQ sauce that suit my taste buds, my boys are chowing down without question. I’m still trying to get my normal bedtime lined back out and dealing with exhaustion throughout the day, and they adjusted after the first few days. It is absolutely astounding how adaptable youngsters can be. That first day, after noticing so many odd sights around him, Ian kept asking the age old question of “Why?” I responded by explaining to him that we are on a fun, new adventure in a different country and that “Everything’s just a little different here.” It has become our family motto and gets tossed about daily. And lately, he has started noticing all of the similarities between our hold home and our new, like the fact that there are horses in England, just like we used to see in Texas. 🙂
We are a very routine oriented family. Our schedules might be flexible, but our routines are typically not. Lunchtime might get pushed to 1 instead of noon, but nap time must follow; that kind of thing. They’ve held on tightly to their routines and treated everything as normally as possible. In short, they’re doing great in their new home and are even appreciating the little things that make living here different, but wonderful. They both get terribly excited when I get the stroller out in the middle of the day to walk to the grocery store and they love watching the magpies out our living room window. It’s these little things that have helped to keep me grounded and remind me that there’s so much to see and do, and that while, “everything’s just a little different,” it’s also a fun world full of new and exciting details to take in. It’s also a reminder that no matter how far from home we are, or how different things get, as long as we have each other everything is A-okay!