Wow what a year 2020 was. I still remember how I spent 2020 New Year’s Eve. R and I went to our friend’s place for dinner, we met everybody and left early to go to LA’s Grand Park at Downtown, where LA’s annual NYE party was held. Much like NYC’s Times Square, only in smaller scale. It was both of our first time going to the event although it was an annual thing. R said he usually just spend NYE at home or with his friends. We were excited to be in the crowd, there were small stages with live music, photo booths, lots of food trucks.. we definitely felt the vibe and excitement. Then came the countdown. To be completely honest it wasn’t major but now, looking back, it seemed like it was everything. Light show, music, and mass countdown, shouting “Happy New Year!” to fellow Angelenos.. wow. If only we knew what was going to happen in the following months…

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What They Don’t Tell You About Moving Abroad For Love

I remember my initial reaction when I was introduced to my husband. “it’s not going to work”, was what came to mind when I learned that he lives in America. At that time, I had no slightest desire of moving to the US. The American dream was not part of my dream, if anything, deep down, what I wanted was to be able to live in the UK again, one day.

Long story short, today I’m approaching my 3 years moving-to-the-US anniversary, yet sometimes I still find myself in disbelief… wow I have really moved abroad for love. It has been quite a ride, full of ups and downs. I’ve shared bits and pieces about my immigrant story in the blog, but one thing I realized that I haven’t shared is the things that nobody told me before my big move.

There will always be that void in your heart

…from missing your family and friends in your home country. Of course you will build a new family together with your significant other, you’ll also make new friends, and you/they can always visit! But things will be different. I’m thankful that I moved in the era of the internet, where connecting with distanced loved ones is no longer a hardship. But still, there will be moments missed, connections lost, which, sooner or later you just gotta accept.

Starting over is hard…

…and it takes a lot of patience. For a planner like myself, my move abroad means having to deal with uncertainty, and many times it almost killed me. Over and over I had to face that plans do change, especially when you are starting over in a new country. Latest example? COVID-19, which of course caught everyone by surprise. Personally, it affected my job hunting after I finished my certificate program. Not going to dwell on it here, but you get the point, starting over is hard and it takes a lot of patience.

Your significant other might not get it…

…but it’s essential that they do! In the earlier days of our marriage, after my move, I realized that my husband did not really get the struggles that I was facing. Whenever I had a difficult moment, he could only say, “be patient”, without actually understanding why I felt whatever I was feeling. He would think that he “understood”, and started to think I was exaggerating, while in fact he did not. It took us a while to work on this issue – now he finally gets it, and even if he still does not, he now knows how to ask the right questions/ how to deal with the issue. It gives me so much peace and comfort knowing that I have someone who truly understands and it calms me during my difficult moments.

Slowly, you’ll find yourself letting go of what you used to know…

…and embracing what you don’t know. My long-time blog readers should know that this move is not the first for me. Back in 2009 I also moved abroad, for education, albeit only for 1 year. At that time, I had to rely on the things I know to survive. I used the way I do things to navigate through the move, adapting to the changes, surviving grad school… and everything that happened in that one year. But now, I realized that I can’t solely rely on myself. I have my husband and like it or not, he does have more experience here in this country. It took me a while to embrace it, letting myself receiving help in navigating my new life here, without thinking that it’s a sign of weakness.

You’ll find that the opportunities are endless…

…it’s just a matter of how you want to make use of it. I like to think that being a “love immigrant” puts me in a unique position. I’m married, in my 30s, with no children, living in the a new country, which means that I get the chance to reinvent myself, a thing that might not be the case had I stayed in my home country. Should I switch careers? should I open my own business? Should I be a full-time housewife? I feel that I now have the liberty to choose what I want to do next, considering that I now have a “backup”, that being the full support of my husband.

Did you also move abroad for love? Have other things to share? Would love to read them! 🙂

2020… so far

Surely 2020 is not going to be easily forgotten. Funny enough, I started the year being in a middle of a crowd, celebrating NYE in LA’s Grand park downtown. There were fireworks, food trucks, live music.. ah, it was fun and lively.

Fast forward 7 months later, the thought of being in the middle of such crowd makes me shudder. Ain’t life funny.

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Perjalanan Panjang Adaptasi

Udah lama sih saya pengen nulis soal hal ini, tapi akhirnya baru kesampean sekarang. Rasanya saya udah pernah ngebahas sedikit di beberapa post terdahulu, soal proses adaptasi kepindahan saya ke Amerika. Nggak disangka, saat ini sudah 2,5 tahun saya pindah kesini.

Selama 2,5 tahun ini hidup saya banyak banget naik turunnya deh. Sampai ada masanya pengen balik ke Christa jaman dulu terus kasih tau soal segala tantangan yang dihadapi, biar Christa jaman dulu nggak cuma mikirin yang indah2 aja ketika memutuskan pindah ke Amerika.

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Ramadan 2020

Hello everyone, it’s been a while since my last post. We are still in quarantine, haven’t left the house much except for few essential errands. Unsure when we will be able to resume normal activities again – perhaps we are redefining “normal”.

Anyway, I was going to post frequently during the quarantine. After all, I am out of school, jobless, and had all my plans for this Spring postponed. However, reality hits different. I was not in a good condition, and often times I found myself lacking the motivation to do anything.

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Sudden Sadness

In the midst of all things that have been happening lately, last Friday I went through a tough time with no particular reason. Well to be honest now I think the culprit was receiving an email from a future employer saying that they had to cancel my upcoming interview due to the situation, and that they’re unsure when they will be able to reschedule it. When I first got the email I didn’t feel anything, it was something that I actually have thought about because of the current situation with coronavirus and all that.

Then I went on to live my day, until a couple of hours later I suddenly felt this surge of sadness and cried uncontrollably. I literally sobbed until I was almost out of breath and felt very confused at the same time, because I didn’t know why I felt the surge of sadness.

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