We are three days into our Copenhagen experience and we are so happy to be here. I’ll be writing a post soon about how we’re settling in but here’s another snippet on our journey to get here.
The decision to move abroad isn’t an easy one and even once you’ve decided to go for it and have the backing of those you love, there are still obstacles to overcome. This post about resilience was written in December. It’s strange to think that less than two months ago we were in a very different position….
Written December 2016
I am reading a book about Danish parenting and one thing that keeps coming up is resilience.* I feel it’s what Rich and I need right now.
Resilience is something inherent in the Danish gene, apparently. According to the book I’m reading, Danes are realistic optimists; they turn negative situations into more positive ones and don’t get hung up on unnecessary negative information. This positive reframing is the key to being resilient and being resilient, is the key to success.** You follow?!
I know I have resilience, when I need it. In fact I’m sometimes a blind optimist and go for everything in the hope it will all work out. (Thinking a 3-4 hour round commute, to work a 10 or 12 hour shift, whilst breastfeeding/expressing and getting up 3 times a night with Lydia would be fiiinne!! I was wrong.)
But sometimes, just sometimes, I need a wallow. Rich doesn’t understand wallowing and has little patience for it, so a wallow will never stay around for long in our household. Tonight however, it’s lurking.
It’s one week until Christmas, we have all been run-down with colds/man flu, Lydia is fighting sleep like a furious fiend and Rich hasn’t had any openings for work in Denmark. We still want to move in February but we’re not sure how and it now feels like we’re in limbo. We decided that Rich getting a job was going to be the catalyst for moving, so for the past two months we’ve put all our energy (what’s left of it after Lydia), into searching, Google translating, applying and approaching companies for Richie to work for. Once Rich has the job it makes registration easier, we’ll know where we should live, what rent we can afford, whether I can freelance, work full-time or part-time. But maybe we need to change our mindset and make it happen another way. It’s unfair having all that pressure on an elusive job. Looking at this from my Danish realistic optimism, we have things going for us that still make this a possible move. I am at a natural point in my career to try something new, Rich has a job to come back to, we know we can rent our house out quickly and easily and it’s there for us to come back to. We also have our family and friends rooting for us, both in England and Denmark. And then there’s Lydia. Our happy, adaptable, clever little bean who is at that golden pre-school age and will lap up the new experience in bounds.
We’ve talked about Plan B and Plan C so I think it’s time to implement them. Except right now we’re tired, and it’s nearly Christmas.
* Jessica Joelle Alexander and Iben Dissing Sandahl, The Danish Way of Parenting (Piatkus, 2016)
** Dean M, Becker, Harvard Business Review quoted in The Danish Way of Parenting (Piatkus, 2016)