Monday, April 8, 2013

Not 'Goodbye', but 'See You Later'...

Happy Monday everyone. I hope you had a good weekend. Mine was pretty decent. Well except for Friday night. Friday night was sad. 

It was Luke and Debbie’s official last night as Aberdonians so we headed over to Malmaison to send them off with a fancy dinner. 

Debbie announced that they’d be moving back in January so I had 2 months to prepare for their inevitable departure. Still, it’s sad to say goodbye to someone you’ve grown so close to in such a short amount of time. 

Expat relationships form quickly because everyone feels like they are going through something together . We’re all away from our families, battling a foreign culture, and exploring a new world.  These shared experiences (along with the shared values that make you say yes to a foreign assignment in the first place) tend to make you instant best friends. 

Jonathan and I do have relationships with locals, but those are more slow to start and even slower to grow. With expats, you automatically have so much common ground and it makes the entire experience more fun (and less scary) when you can navigate it together. Add in the fact that Luke and Debbie were LSU fans, and we were destined to be buddies.   

At this point in our transient marriage, we know that we have remained close to friends who are scattered all over the world. I may not talk to them or email them on a daily basis, but I still know that if we have the opportunity to meet up or chat, it’ll be like no time has passed at all. 

Not everyone is built for this life and we’ve had several friends who stopped investing time and energy into us because they knew we weren’t going to stick around forever. We’ve been guilty of the same exact thing. As hard as it is, it’s kind of nice to have a support group who knows and accepts exactly what comes with the territory of being our friends. 

My mom and dad were expats and I know my Mom’s heart hurts so much when I call her crying because another friend has left. She’s all too familiar with the constant practice of saying goodbye. 

My Mom kept sending me encouraging texts all weekend saying ‘London isn’t far away’ and ‘you’ll keep in touch’. And actually, I was less emotional with Debbie and Luke leaving than I have been for other friends because London isn’t that far away and I have no doubt we will keep in touch.   

And besides, Luke and Jonathan both work for the same company so I have high hopes that we’ll cross each others' paths frequently and hopefully be living in the same destination again soon. These are comforting thoughts, but nothing will replace having this couple as a part of our daily lives. 

At least the food at Malmaison helped to dull the pain a little. I’ve been craving cheeseburgers and fries, and this steak restaurant has the best you’ll find in Aberdeen. 

Then for dessert, we scanned the menu for Sticky Toffee Pudding, but were stopped in our tracks when we saw ‘Molten Chocolate Lava Cake with Peanut Butter Sauce and a Side of Peanut Butter Ice Cream’ on the menu. 
Jon and I ordered one to share and it was the best thing I have ever tasted in the history of ever. Even though I was already stuffed from the burger and fries, I could not stop eating it. It was heavenly. 

When we got home, I was surprised to see how much my baby bump was showing at 11 weeks. I took a picture and sent it to my mom. 
The next morning, my stomach was back to basically flat, and I realized that I had instead sent my mom a picture of a food baby the size of a usual 5 month pregnant lady. 
In the morning...still a bump but more subtle
Maybe stretching my belly out during these frequent food binges will make it more pliable for the baby bump and I'll be able to escape those dreaded stretch marks….But I should probably lather on the cocoa butter just in case.  


  1. Im glad you had a nice time (i adore the Mal)-im sure it must be really tough, but what an adventure really.

  2. Hahaha, I love that you aren't afraid to show your food baby bump!!! You are looking beautiful my friend!

    This post hits home. The rewards outweigh the sacrifices but it is still so hard some days. And I'm not even in a foreign country! Hoping to be neighbors again one day. Miss you!!

  3. I met Donald Trump at the Mal one night. He was actually likable. Good memories there. Order the ground beef medium rare for fun.

  4. You should double down on the fries. Don't starve my grandchild

  5. I think the baby is starting to make an outward appearance for sure. You look radiant. Can't wait to see you and grandbaby too!!! Listen to your Dad about the double down part.