|The dining room of our rental home. Also note the small un-updated kitchen behind it.|
So we are settling. I feel normal, sort of. Our kids are starting to have a schedule. We have places to be and people to see and life is feeling normal. I am almost adjusting to the expenses of EVERYTHING, but really I cannot complain. Arlington is gorgeous, the weather is perfect, our new neighbors are very friendly, and we are really having a good time.
|The stairs and the door to the kitchen.|
There is part of me that is having a hard time. The thing is this: I lived in this country where there was a lot of really crappy things, corruption, poverty, health problems, and disrupted family lives. Without seeking it out I saw a lot of really sad things. And here I am in Arlington, Virginia. Arlington where I swear Masters degrees and JDs are the new high school diploma. Arlington, Virginia where for $750,000 in a recession you can have the privilege to buy an un-updated home that is 1 bathroom and three bedrooms.
One side of our living room..
|The other side of the living room (not my art)|
The saddest part about all of these feelings is the reality that no one wants to hear about it. People don't want to hear about it and I find myself drawn to other foreign service friends who have dealt with the same experience. Not that I had anything traumatic or awful happen in my time in the Philippines but I have lived abroad, seen and dealt with a lot of crap and now I am back in the antithesis of Manila and the problems here are of a very different nature. Problems that I wish Manila could trade for, because you know when your biggest dilemma at the grocery store is which aisle of cheese should I peruse first, things are good.
The question I now have to face as I think about this is how, as a parent, can I teach my children to have that sensitivity to the broader perspective? I pray that I can because it is the only way it makes the moves and uprooting worth it. Their educations abroad may end up being top notch but the true value of this experience comes from gaining a broader perspective of the people of the world.