Research has shown that moving is more stressful than getting a divorce or a new job. So why the f*** do I do it, on average, every three years? Because I always forget how painful it is. For me moving is like giving birth: I only remember the beautiful, exciting moments. If, each time we moved, we had made a child instead, we’d have twelve kids by now. But also because I’m addicted to the feeling of being enchanted by a new place, a new culture, new foods and produce, a new language, or just by having an opportunity to reinvent myself. Maybe to become a little less “Shoody” – a nickname a good friend mine gave me, it’s a combination of “Shelly” and “Woody” (as in Woody Allen) and “should.”
I think our latest move from SoCal to Mallorca was especially hard, because we didn’t just fly straight to Mallorca after closing up shop in Los Angeles. We travelled together, as a family, for three solid months. Sounds romantic and charming, but, trust me, it wasn’t. Being together 24/7 with four very opinionated individuals (myself included) is not always fun. By the time we landed in Mallorca on 9/1, we were all suffering from a severe case of homesickness. Except that we didn’t even have a home to be sick for. That took another month. We’ve been living out of suitcases for four months!
It’s been a month since we arrived, and although we were already familiar with the island and how beautiful it is, we are still in the mode of being fascinated by everything around us, from the markets, to the landscape, to the health system, to the boys’ new school.
After three days at their progressive, modern, unconventional, creative school, the boys’ homesickness disappeared. My husband never really suffers from homesickness, but me? I’m Shoody. I always miss someone or some place, like a classic immigrant, but at least the anxiety and butterflies in my stomach are gone.
I don’t know if it’s my cellphone brain or my age, but learning a new language is not easy for me anymore. (These days I can barely manage to preserve my English!) Last week I had my first formal Spanish lesson with two other moms from the school, taught by one of the Spanish moms. Lets put it this way, I couldn’t comprehend a lot but we all had a good laugh.
Mallorca is a stunning island. The lifestyle here is still very laid back. They still do siestas from 13:30 till 16:30. The health system here is at least ten times better and cheaper than the US. The organic produce is full of flavor and inexpensive. Unlike LA, there are four actual seasons, which I think is healthier for us.
Yet why do I have a feeling that in a couple of years we will start to think about moving again?
God, I hope we won’t! But if we do, where to? Any suggestions? 😉