Rachel

Home in Norway and it is not as bad as I thought it would be

I have been so scared of this for so long – probably even before I left for the US – the return to Norway…

Yet here I am and it is not bad, really… I guess my moms saying is coming true after all – this is what it is in Norwegian and I will attempt to make a fitting translation to English:

Det går bedre enn du tror når du tror det går verre enn du frykter.

The translation is something along the lines of:

It will be better than you think when you think it will be worse than your worst fear.

Do you get it? I guess it is my mantra now… because I feared this return so much – I have been so brave in front of the children, putting on a happy face and being overtly excited about going home, all the while I am crying thinking about the amazing friends I had made in Santa Barbara, how close they became, how much at home I finally felt and how amazing it was to always know that the sun would be shining tomorrow too!

And so I´m back, in Norway, where it is cold and rainy, and I am pretty happy! Turns out, I have a lot of friends here too, and they are amazing, coming to visit me, asking me how I have been, wanting to know about my life in the US, but being truly happy that I am home again. And my children – wow – I forgot how liberating it is to just open the door and let them run around the neighborhood without any appointment with parents. I forgot how easy it is to just shrug and say sure, when a kid asks if he can sleep over, and you realize it is 10 pm and nobody has called the cops while trying to find him – because they KNOW he is safe. And our dog, our beautiful little chihuahua – who loves us so much – and the children walk her and play with her, and snuggle with her – and we are complete again.

And our house – yes – I loved our house in Santa Barbara, but this is OUR house, where I can put up pictures and decorate and make it mine! Where my knitting is, and my supplies and my crafts and my pillows and my blankets – and I knwo where everything is because I put it there.

So – nope – I have not succummed to sadness over having lost Santa Barbara (yet) – I have learned to see the beauty of my area, town and appr

eciate the fantastic aspects of actually living in a crazy safe neighborhood where everybody looks after everybody else, where I can job at noon (because it just isnt warm then), and where I can be myself, and realize, that my friends actually like that about me – and not the opposite which is what I feared. Yes, I fit in perfectly in the US, and yes, I love the culture, the food, the atmosphere, the beauty, the politeness, and the friendliness. I would, should and could have been an American and would have loved every minute of it. But lets face it – I guess I also love the cold, the rain, the rawness, the absolutely not polite Norwegians, the language, the food, the safety and my friends and family here in Norway.

So – it serves to reiterate the following mantra of mine:

Det går bedre enn du tror når du tror det går verre enn du frykter.

It will be better than you think when you think it will be worse than you your worst fear.

And when we miss California, and the wine and the food, we can always search our stash and hope for a hidden treasure, like a bottle of Santa Ynez red or white!

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