Leaving Earth: The Emotional Toll of Moving Abroad as a Divorced Parent

Leaving Earth: The Emotional Toll of Moving Abroad as a Divorced Parent

Photo Credit – Mass Effect 3

Hey Fam! 

I haven’t been posting as consistently as I’ve intended to, but I’ve been going through quite a difficult time in my life. The good news is, this difficult journey is leading up to a much happier ending, as I’ve decided as of last year to move abroad for matters of the heart and spirit. 

It’s been one of the most gut wrenching decisions someone in my situation, a divorced mother could make, but when you know in your heart that it’s the right thing to do, you have to take the risk and decide to live your best life instead of waiting for that best life to crawl toward you, because in reality, it never will. Life is a difficult entity and each decision is a lesson in hopes to better ourselves. 

I haven’t had much luck in finding many resources that would assist in my search for comfort or organization during this difficult process, so I decided to contribute my own. 

Moving Abroad is Frightening. No matter how exciting, how much love and support you receive in your new home country, it is one of the most uncertain and scary feelings in the world. I often feel homesick while I’m still in the United States and start to appreciate the small things I’m leaving behind that I’ve always taken for granted. Food.

I’m mentally exhausted. My brain has been nonstop since moving forward of the decision to move overseas. Video games are definitely my way of mentally checking out. Between moving, purging my place, dealing with legal matters due to children being involved, finances and relationship stresses, my tummy is constantly in knots and I have to really push through and kick my own ass with some positive reinforcement. Stay focused! 

You feel extreme guilt. When children are involved, you feel extremely guilty. Knowing you’re giving them a better quality of life on your end is well worth it and balance will sure come, but when you’re away from your children you feel like a horrible person. I want to work very hard and set an amazing example for my kids, but the guilt I feel taking them with me half of the time and being away from them for another portion plus the guilt I feel toward their father and other family members weighs on me. However, I was extremely unhappy for many years and the fact that I’m finally following my heart and having a better quality life which will give my children an even better quality of life is worth the fight.

 Be a positive force. This one, by far, has been difficult for me. My entire process has been painful. I also had a family death to tend to and some business collapses in the middle of my move. Life happens but we can either be stuck on the bad or we can learn from it. I may not be a cheerful little muffin every day, but I am constantly learning and constantly growing. I also have to be supportive of everyone involved in this process. Do not try to glamorize the idea of moving abroad to your children. Tell them it’s okay to express any feelings they have and be sure to ALWAYS work with them. 

Remember why you’re doing this. Nobody forced you to make this decision. You made it yourself and it doesn’t mean it’s going to be easy. You can either choose to live your life wondering what it would be like, or you can put yourself through hell and see for yourself whether or not the outcome was worth it. Regardless, you have to remember why you made the decision to move. Whether it be career, love, family or some soul searching. You being a better version of yourself means others around you will benefit from that progress. 

Don’t be a selfish jerk. Be as sensitive and patient as possible to those of you in your life who this may be effecting. This doesn’t mean you have to put your life or goals on hold, or feel guilted out of your decision. This means that you are willing to take the time through much effort, logic and care to make this process as easy as others allow it to be. Try to remember that you are not responsible for how others react. You are responsible for how you treat people and how you react to them. If you have a healthy relationship with your ex, be as fair as possible and work very hard at conducting yourself in a mature and professional manner. If communicating verbally isn’t effective, write to each other via e-mail for your personal and legal records. Stick to the topic and understand that even if they aren’t the nicest at times, this is hurting them too. 

Travel will wear you out. I’ll be making my second trip to Australia in one month in about 2 weeks. I just returned to the United States less than a week ago. Every blog post I’ve seen talks about the glamorous side of travel, but in reality, you’ll be so discombobulated from constant jet lag that you won’t even know what day it is let alone time. I’m barely adjusting back to Pacific Standard Time after barely adjusting to Eastern Australia Standard Time. 

I hope this information helps someone in a similar position as me. This is in no way an attempt to over dramatize moving abroad or discourage anyone from doing it. It’s been an amazing experience for me and I’ve learned a lot about my own strength.

The love I’ve received in Australia is overwhelming, and the country itself is beautiful. I feel very much so at home and at peace there and know my presence their will have a positive effect on the lives of others I care about in that country while allowing myself to feel peace and happiness, and continue to focus on my own personal goals. 

Having to commute back and forth every 90 days isn’t ideal for many, but I’m willing to take a chance because at the end of the day, my heart is finally lighter that it ever was and my spirit is twice as strong. 

I’ve had to pull out of myself courage and hope when I felt cornered, controlled, alone and pressured. I feel like I’m growing into a much more confident woman and much more happier person. It’s just the journey isn’t easy, but progress isn’t made with taking the easy path. 

I had zero support from people who knew me at first but the more I grew, the more they understood my decision to follow my heart and take a chance at happiness.  It’s brought me closer to people I was angry at, and closer to people whom I was neglected from. 

Leaving Earth: The Emotional Toll of Moving Abroad as a Divorced Parent

Sunrising near The Tropic of Capricorn  while traveling to Australia

Overall, you feel like you really are leaving Earth, but you’re doing so in order to make YOUR world a peaceful one. You aren’t letting anyone or anything define your quality of life. Move forward every moment and take each day as they come. 

“This war has brought us pain, and suffering, and loss. But its also brought us together as soldiers, allies, friends. This bond that ties us together is something the reapers will never understand. It’s more powerful than any weapon. Stronger than any ship. It can’t be taken or destroyed. – Commander Shepard,  Mass Effect 3

 

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