Tuesday, December 14, 2010

the deep end

remember swimming lessons when you were a kid? they start you out in the shallow end, and you practice putting your face in the water. you blow some bubbles, you kick your feet; all whilst holding onto the precious lifesaving side of the pool. at some stage they make you let go of the side and you learn to float on your back while they hold you up. eventually you are turned over and you learn how to use your arms and legs together - and voila! you are a swimmer! a real, true to life swimmer!

nice, yes? let me catch you up on my experience moving to belgium thus far using this same analogy; in six words.

Drop kicked into the deep end.

Let me explain:

Wed - we landed in Brussels after flying overnight from Dallas
Thurs - 4 brutal interviews at the office (for a new position i applied for) (mind you, this was thanksgiving day)
Fri - got the job
Mon - sent to Barcelona for 3 days of meetings
Wed - stuck in Barcelona airport due to bad weather
Thurs - 3am arrival into Brussels and stuck at home due to snow
Fri - first day in the new office & first (failed) attempt at public transportation (in the midst of uncommon low temps and record breaking snowfall)

Did i mention that while I was 'living it up Barcelona-style' for 3 days, zach was ill and stuck in a new country with 2 jet lagged children under the age of 3? his own version of the deep end, i assure you.

it wasn't the soft landing we or the 9th hour team were hoping for nor expecting. no home, no car, at least half of us with the fever and lingering sickness...


i wrote that last bit 2 weeks into our belgian initiation. i'd decided to reserve this post and just mull over it a bit before i threw it out to the world... over the course of the past 5 weeks, we've managed to doggy paddle our way over to the side of the deep end. now, clinging to the side of the pool, 7 weeks later, i have a bit more perspective.


this has been sitting for 6 months now, waiting to be posted. i think it might be okay to post now. what i lovingly refer to as 'the dark days' of our belgian initiation are over and we find ourselves at peace with where we are and what we are doing here. yes, there are days i still reach out for the water wings to help keep me afloat, but those days are few and far between and even when standing on the very tips of my toes keeps my head above the water, i know it will be okay.

welcome to belgium, _________!

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