Many people have been asking me how the adjustment has been going from German life to an American one.
Is there culture shock?
Do I miss it?
Where would I rather live?
These questions have become pretty normal around these parts lately, so I'd thought I'd take the time to answer.
An international move will always require adjusting, whether moving somewhere completely new or back to somewhere familiar after being away for a while. For the most part these adjustments are small; different placement of wall outlets and light switches, getting used to handling American money again, etc;.
Some adjustments are much larger. I married Steven at eighteen years old and immediately moved to Europe, so essentially my entire adult life has been spent in another country. Coming back to the states, I realize I know nothing about American tax laws, insurance policies or even what a normal montly utility bill should cost. I'm pretty familiar with all of these things in Germany, but the US is a completely different story.
Do I miss it over there? Yes, but not in the way I thought I would. I miss Steven's family the most. From the very beginning they have made me feel like one of their own and I'm so grateful to have been able to spend two years with them in Germany - now it's hard to be without them.
I thought that moving back to the states would mean giving up constant and/or frequent travel, so I was very anxious that a few months here would have me going stir crazy. It turns out I don't need to worry about this at all; after mapping out the next several months it's become clear that Steven and I will be traveling a lot within the US. We live in a beautiful country that I truly haven't seen much of and I am so excited to begin discovering it with my foreign Husband. Seeing things through his eyes makes my country so much more beautiful.
Life is very busy right now, which believe it or not I think has made the transition easier since I have absolutely no time to sit around and be sad about it. In the next few weeks both of my best friends will be getting married and I am involved in the planning of their bridal showers/bachelorette parties/weddings. I've only been back about a week and I've already spent three days in San Francisco, a day in Los Angeles and a day in San Diego! (phew!) On top of all that I am taking finals for my online classes, looking for employment and readying our new little apartment.
Things are stressful, yes, but it's the good kind of stressful where you feel productive and successful for accomplishing your tasks and goals and somehow managing it all.
We are so happy to be back and I am ready for the adventures in store for us.