I’m trying to have this conversation face-to-face (either electronically or in the real world) with as many people as possible, but for those who haven’t heard yet-
The McCarthy Family is Moving to Dallas.
It’s just all happening so fast. James’ job opportunities are bringing him back to the big D.
Wow. Writing that just made it feel so real.
This move has come at such a whirlwind pace. I’ve had to adjust my own emotions, both excitement of reconnecting with friends and family and some sunshine, but at the same time leaving behind the people we love and the life we have built (again).
My friend asked me the other day, “Are you so happy about going home?” I thought about this- and truthfully, this move is bittersweet. I have two homes now. My dad warned me that international marriages are hard. And they are. No matter where you go, your heart is far away from someone you love.
The past few years have been full of hustle and bustle: completing graduate school, getting married and pregnant the same day, two more babies, countless career shifts, six homes, and so much immigration paperwork.
I have longed for some quiet, some stability, some sameness- and at the same time, my husband and I love crazy, adventure, seeking opportunity, and a hint of risk. To add to the spice of our lives, we are expecting the fourth baby in July, too.
This is madness really, isn’t it?
The house is sold subject to contract, but we don’t know when it will be finalised yet. I will be stateside at the latest mid-April otherwise I’ll be overstaying my visa.
Below: Our house is under contract. Wahoo.
The logistics and time line are still unfolding.
Stress: Eustress or Distress?
This is my current to-do list for the UK:
- Sell the house- finalize all the paperwork
- Reduce my possessions to 10 suitcases worth of things
- Sell/donate/trash everything that cannot fit in 10 suitcases
- Sell two cars
- Keep the kids on a regular routine- school, meals, baths, social life
- Enjoy my last few weeks with friends and family
- Cancel all insurances, phones, internet, television, council bills, utilities
- Transfer funds to US accounts
- Book our flights
The to-do list for the US:
- Research and tour schools
- Find and buy a house
- Find and buy two cars
- Renew my driver’s license which expired- DMV Trip. Yuck.
- Reset up mobile phone service, utilities, insurances, bank accounts, etc.
- Purchase/borrow furniture, electronics, kitchen and laundry appliances, linens, dishes, tools, lawn and garden equipment, etc.
- Find an obstetrician, pediatrician, and family physician and make a birth plan
- Get the kids on a regular routine and start their activities
Easy, peasy, lemon-squeezy, right?
My prayer for our family is that on this journey the details of starting over (again) will bring a peaceful calm. There are so many emotions of loss in leaving the UK- particularly leaving behind extended family. I’m pregnant, so managing emotions is not my top asset at present- just ask my neighbour who answered her door to me in floods of tears.
It’s a lot. All at once. All so fast.
Eustress- A positive response to stress that provides you an opportunity to accomplish a goal and motivates you to get the task done. Eustress can lead to feelings of satisfaction and accomplishment and wellness.
Distress- Viewing stress as a negative event which can increase anxiety, fear, and despair. Can lead to illness, mental health and relationship breakdown.
I’m not going to let the to-do lists, the unknowns, the uncertainties, or the drama of the move steal my joy. Otherwise why do this? I want to set an example for the kids on how to cope with change, how to embrace something new, how to put faith into action- that no matter where you go, the Lord is with you- sustaining, guiding, giving peace and wisdom if you invite him to do so. It’s like my friend said last night, “I’ve gone through some difficult circumstances in my life, but I didn’t walk it. I was carried.”
I have stress- but I get to chose how to look at this- an opportunity for growth or a to-do list that is going to overwhelm me. I can pick- eustress or distress.
Be love. Be loved.