Monday, March 12, 2012

Monday Progress Report

I’m a bit scatter-brained lately and I think it’s showing in my blogging. Now that we’re in the midst of the chaos that is relocating, I might be a little less apt to be posting everyday (I’ll still try!), but every Monday I’ll do my darndest to make sure to summarize where we are in the relocation process.
Logistics: The biggest breakthrough last week was getting Jonathan’s official job offer. Once he signed on the dotted line, we knew our relocation counselor would be contacting him within 48 hours with the next piece of the puzzle. Forty-Eight hours later (to the minute), our relocation counselor provided us with a step by step guide of the upcoming process. It’s truly a domino effect and one task must be completed before we can begin working on the next. It’s tough on my multi-tasking heart, but also helps keep panic attacks at bay. The comprehensive list is quite a beast so it’s nice to compartmentalize it.
The first few steps are for Jonathan alone. He needs to partake in an ex-pat orientation and fill out a few forms for his visa sponsorship. We both need to have medical exams, but that’s pretty easy-peasy to do- just show up and take deep breaths when instructed. For now, I can just focus on finishing my last week of work and keep on pretending that my entire life isn’t in a state of upheaval. Ah, denial.
Shipment: Our biggest stressor so far has been trying to figure out what to put in our shipment. The company pays for one unlimited shipment for the first assignment outside the US. Since we are planning on spending the next 10-20 years outside the States, we are trying to anticipate what we’ll need down the road and purchase it now. After this, we likely won’t be able to get anything substantial from the States for a while. Some of you might not realize this, but the US is cheap! Real cheap. And convenient. Online shopping and Target are just not the norm in other parts of the world.
Our biggest source of strife has been over furniture. Right now we live in a teeny-tiny 3 bedroom cottage and therefore only have a teeny-tiny 3 bedroom cottage’s worth of furniture. Since we only have 6 weeks until our move date, and most furniture takes 4-8 weeks to ship, we have to decide if we need more very soon, without knowing what our living situation will be in Aberdeen. Will we have 3 or 4 bedrooms? I don’t know. Will we have a conservatory (sunroom)? I don’t know. Will we have garage/attic/closet? Don’t know. Will we have a formal dining room? I don’t know. I don’t know. I don’t know. And we’ll continue to not know until about 4 weeks out from the move.
We went ahead and bought a secretary desk and two chairs from Restoration Hardware this weekend. These are functional and small so we have a lot of options on how to utilize them. I’m picturing using the chairs as a cozy reading area by the fireplace. Will we have a fireplace? I don’t know. But since we’ll be living in Scotland, I sure hope so.
In non-furniture shipment news, I also picked up 2 pairs of my favorite running shoes. I’ll definitely be getting my run on in Aberdeen, so I figured I should stock up on a pair that I really like. We also bought a rug for our living room. Why we didn’t do this 18 months ago when we moved to Houston, I have no clue. At least we have it now to help stage our house.
This week’s goals: Hopefully this week Jon will complete his orientation and receive preliminary visa approval. We’ll also try to complete our medical exam. This is my last week of work, so starting next week, we hope to start crossing a lot more off the to-do list including the biggies of putting our house on the market and taking our house hunting trip to Scotland.
Personal Note: Already, this move is teaching Jon and me things about each other and the existing dynamics in our marriage. This weekend we had our first move-related fight, and it stemmed directly from core differences in our personality. When Jon is faced with a stressful to-do list he starts immediately attacking any task in sight. At first, he accomplishes more than I do, but due to his hastiness and impulsivity, he will often need to re-do a task that he didn’t do correctly the first time.To me, it feels a bit schizophrenic which I think is why I’ve been so scatter brained lately. Jon is a natural born leader so I’ve just fallen in line with his way of doing things.  
On the other hand, I’m a much more careful and cautious person. I try to map out the whole picture of what needs to be done, prioritize tasks and come up with a strategy for how to most efficiently accomplish my list. Initially, I don’t accomplish as much, but once I get started, I’m pretty efficient.
I admit that for the past week and a half, I haven’t done much outwardly, but inwardly, I’ve been a researching and planning fool. Jonathan interpreted this lack of outward action as a lack of enthusiasm and unwillingness to take my fair share of the responsibility. I assured him that I am beyond thrilled to be going to Aberdeen (maybe he should read my blog) and showed him my detailed to-do list (in order of priority and anticipated date of completion). We had an amazing Bible study last night where we both admitted our failings as spouses and asked the other for forgiveness. Most importantly, we realized that we are both on the same team here and we could both be more patient in letting each other deal with stress in our own ways.
 I’m ready to get to working on my ever-growing list, but still have 4 days of full-time work to wrap up. Our nights this week will be full with two nights at the Houston Rodeo (Zac Brown Band and Jason Aldean. YeeHaw!) and spending time with my Dad before he heads back to Africa. This weekend, we will be making the rounds in South Louisiana to spend some quality time with friends and family before we ship off to the UK. It feels insane to be leaving town this weekend, but it’s absolutely necessary.  I’ll need a bit of relaxation and girl-friend time because come Monday, I’ll be officially unemployed, and will have to start facing down "The Beast" (aka: my to-do list):

1 comment:

  1. The hurry-up-and-wait relocation process is so taxing! Your and Jon's honesty with each other and christ-centered resolution is inspirational. We miss you guys! P.S. LOVE the new furniture