Sunday, 25 March 2018

Transition and change

They say life changes the most in your 20's, lets just say Bill and I can say yes that is true! The past 8 years have brought many many changes and here are just some of the big ones!  We met  in 2010 and both moved to countries which were not our own, for a year.  We were married in 2011 and finally lived in the same country together. 

Two years later Bill finished studying and started working, we bought our first house, 4 weeks after that we had our first baby.  Two years after that we had our second baby and moved our family to Haiti and all that that entails.

Now almost two years later we are currently adjusting to living in a third different country together (Bill has actually lived in 4 different countries since 2010!) and adopting a baby.

The view from our house

Bill can't wait for the day when we live in one place and don't go anywhere else.  However  I keep reminding him that with us being from two different countries and living in a third that that is very unlikely to happen!

With all that experience I can say we are getting pretty good at coping with big changes.  We know (mostly) what to expect now.

We know to expect to be really tired, even if your resting and not doing much and sleeping well transition takes a lot of out you.  A combination of everything being new and having to adjust to your new normal is exhausting.  And is not only tiring for a few days, but it can take weeks sometimes even months before you adapt to the change and feel like you have more energy.  Anyone who has had a baby can tell you that, maybe they would even say the tiredness lasts for years (around 18 I think!)

After about 3 days in Haiti Sam slept for literally 20 hours!

We know we are going to feel frustrated.  I always tell the story of Bill moving to Northern Ireland and being extremely annoyed at the brush / broom.  They just don't make brooms the same in N.Ireland as they do in Canada and every time Bill swept the floor he ended up feeling annoyed and frustrated. It just wasn't the same as home. Something I didn't expect to be frustrated at in Canada was going grocery shopping.  In fact with such limited choice in Haiti I was looking forward to cooking being easy and eating lots of food we can't find in Haiti.  But, let me tell you it is not enjoyable.  Trying to figure out what some things are, which brands are good and which are not and what is a good price for something is very frustrating.

We know, with change its often the little things that are most difficult.  When we moved to Haiti we were expecting it to be hot, we were expecting the culture to be different,  we were expecting to feel homesick but what we were not expecting was that cooking and eating would be so different.  Even things which were made of the same ingredients still tasted different.  We were not expecting Sam, who was 2 1/2 at the time and not a fussy eater at all to have such a big problem with this change and therefore were not prepared.  We brought absolutely no foodstuffs from home with us.  As a result we struggled with Sam for probably over a year to eat his dinner.  Almost every night was a battle. It was exhausting and sometimes still is.

We know we need be prepared and organised.   The more prepared you are, the easier it is to cope with change.  Before coming to Canada we talked and talked about what we needed and what it was going to be like. I wrote lists of things Bill needed to buy before the boys and I got here.  We talked to Sam and Joel about coming to Canada and the snow and Grandpa & Grandma and baby Jacob. And it helped... a lot.

The boys have gone from sun to snow, from bare feet to snow boots, from outside all day to inside all day and from two boys  to three boys and they have done extremely well with these huge changes happening in their wee lives. 

When we moved to Haiti, Sam pretty much stopped eating, he also stopped being potty trained and we also went through many many hours of screaming and tantrums.  It really took him a full year to settle in Haiti.  So bringing him to Canada I expected things to be hard for Sam. He doesn't cope well with change and likes routine.  However he has been great, we give him lots and lots of rest and I make sure I talk to him about everything that is going to happen and where we are going to go and who we are going to meet.

It has been lovely to watch him with Jacob, right from day one he was calling Jacob his little brother, he said to me ' I love Jacob, his skin is so soft.  I really wanted a little brother who has really soft skin.'  If Jacob is crying Sam brings his dummy or tells me he needs to sleep or needs his bottle.
Ok, so Joel doesn't quite have the snow boots idea he still
loves bare feet!


Joel, on the other hand is very easy going and just takes everything in his stride.  I thought he would be jealous of Jacob because he is a real mummy's boy and loves to be held.  Yet again, Joel has had no issues he has just taken everything in his stride.

So this big big change has not really felt so big, and maybe its because we have become good at dealing with change but I'm pretty sure its mostly because of your prayers for us. Throughout all the changes of the last 8 years but more so the last two months we are so thankful that God never changes.  And no matter where we go or who we are with or what the weather is like that God is still faithful.  God is still leading and guiding us and God is giving us that peace that passes all understanding.

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