Broken down by fours

2/25/2015

One week I feel great, and am explaining how I have gotten used to the abaya. The next week, I’m a total mess. Okay, maybe at times it can be broken down by hours, not weeks. And maybe a total mess is really just a nice way of saying that I may have just gone manic.

If someone asks me how I am doing, they will get the same answer most of the time. “I am fine.”

  1. I am smiling, but gritting my teeth
  2. I am on the verge of tears
  3. I may just go on a rant of exaggerated dislike for almost everything
  4. I really am fine

I’m trying to be thankful for things that are good in my life to counterbalance the stresses

  1. So thankful for my husband who keeps on loving me, even in the ugly moments
  2. I’m thankful that my health has been good. I even traveled to a country (cough, cough… the U.S.) that reported epidemic like flu outbreaks and never got sick.
  3. I’m thankful that I have things that bring me joy (all things art)
  4. We are always well fed

New things that have happened in the past weeks

  1. Trying home cooked Vietnamese food
  2. Meeting a Vietnamese ambassador and his wife
  3. Laying out in the sun by a pool, in a Muslim country
  4. Giving up my flip flops because we (the ladies in the group) had all worn high heels and did touristy stuff that required a lot of walking. I think the ambassador’s wife needed a break from the heels as well, and I didn’t have the heart or the nerve to tell her she had my shoes on. It was a really funny moment. I’ll never forget it.

Things I really need to work on as an expat.

  1. Not shutting down
  2. Every little detail is important or not at all (need to avoid extreme thinking)
  3. Generalization of things is often quite unfair to myself and others
  4. Keeping the bad folder underneath, and not as stocked full as the good folder

If it wasn’t for my being here in Saudi for the past 4 months, I would not have been able to have the experiences that I have been able to write about, and for that I am also thankful.

CAM00147 A view of Bahrain

CAM00148 The patchwork camel needed a scrub down

CAM00156 Old and new

CAM00150 Cool art at the old fort (also has patchwork)

Saudi is not going to change for me, I have to change for it, or I have to leave.

Working on perspective, and tossing around ideas in my head for the next steps in life

-wifeabroad

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4 thoughts on “Broken down by fours

  1. Sue Sprague says:

    Hey Holly… Just read your most recent blog. Thank you for bringing another culture into American perspecive through your art, pictures and writings. I’ve been up for awhile sitting alone in the quiet of my living room remembering the times you were here. I’ve always liked you Holly and I do miss you … would like to have seen you when you were home but I knew you had a lot of family to spend time with. I think you need to ‘give yourself a break’ … you left all things familiar and comfortable to go where everything is new. Change is not bad but … change is change. I just retired last June and though I love the freedom of retirement, I also miss working. This change is good but at the same time I want to go back to my ‘familiar’ lifestyle of schedules and people I miss. Once in a while I allow myself to reflect and get in touch with my feelings; it makes my new life seem more tolerable. That I can remember you’ve never said if you’re there permanently or if you’ll come back to the states. I give you my best wishes, Holly, and hope you are happy. You have blended well into your new environment and I know your husband has been the biggest part of that! Take care and enjoy … I think of you and pray for you and your husband often.

    Like

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