One Step At A Time

It’s funny how the more demanding and stressful life becomes, the more difficult it is to find time to write about it.  I realize I haven’t posted anything (in English) for quite some time and I wanted to get back here just for a bit before my 30’s pass me by and I have to change the title of my blog.

Life is, well, life.  I’m not complaining, as I am living with my wonderful wife and we are only a few weeks away from welcoming our daughter into the world, but to say the last few months have been challenging is quite possibly the biggest understatement of all time.  To be fair, I really had no idea what I was getting myself into last February when I got off the plane in Madrid.  Sure, I knew I was embarking on a new chapter in my life, but it has been more than that.  Much more.  My life has been turned completely upside down, to the point I just have to try to take things one day at a time and keep the faith that it will all work out in the end.  So far, this philosophy has worked, despite me being the most stressed out I have ever been.  Granted, I am an anxious person by nature, I always have been, but this has really been my biggest challenge ever.  I’ve gone basically eight months without a job and despite speaking adequate Spanish, I still feel lost when out in public and trying to communicate.  Veronica continually reassures me that I am doing fine, but each month we both have panic attacks over money.  I know, we still have a roof over our heads, food in our mouths, and a car to get us where we need to go, but it is impossible not to imagine the worst every now and then when week after week goes by and I don’t have a job.

Initially, the problem was I couldn’t get a job because I hadn’t yet received government approval to work.  This made the summer months very difficult.  I have finally been approved to work legally, but it requires me to have some number that they haven’t yet mailed to me.  I could rant and rave about the Spanish government for days. In fact, I could probably write an entire blog just on their inadequacies but I am trying to remain positive about the country I imagine I will find myself living in for the next four or five years.  I have a few part time work opportunities that have presented themselves and I am hoping to have a steady income starting this week.

I won’t lie, I have an immense longing to go home, but I realize several things about this.  One, the home I sometimes imagine going home to no longer exists, and two, going home now would only cause further stress on Vero and me.  Of course when I say I want to go home, I want her and the baby with me, and we have talked about moving back to the United States, but the plan has always been to move around the time Chloe is ready to start school, as we both agree the schools in this country are awful.  We want the best for our daughter and we feel living in the US would be better for her during her school age years.  Of course, every time I get frustrated with the way things work in this country, or don’t work for that matter, I tell myself I want to go home.  Honestly, there are times Vero appears completely fed up with the way things go around here and she even hints that we should move back home, but I think realistically, we both know we have a lot of work to do here before we can just hop on a plane to the United States.

If I actually can maintain a job here for the next four or five years and Vero continues making her salary, we should be able to set aside enough money to move back to the US without too many financial concerns.  Of course we will both need jobs, and sometimes I worry more about me finding a job than her.  She is a very qualified travel agent who speaks two languages.  I can’t imagine it will be too terribly difficult for her to find work, provided she has the proper VISA when we come over.  I on the other hand fear the employment process.  In the US, my only real career was McDonald’s and I really don’t see myself going back there.  Hopefully, by the time we plan to move, my Spanish will be strong enough that I can possibly find a teaching job, even if it is not in a school necessarily.  Without a degree, my options are limited, but I have looked into taking classes here in Spain that would provide me certification to teach Spanish.  Hopefully this would carry some weight in the US.  I sometimes find myself sitting up at night thinking about this and I have to tell myself that I still have five years to prepare for it.

I know worrying about things is useless and gets me nowhere, but I can’t avoid it, it’s who I am.  It does help to write things down finally and use my brain a little bit in English.  I sometimes worry that I can’t get things out because my Spanish is still too limited to fully express all the things I want to say.  It’s frustrating at times to always feel tongue tied, but I have to push on and continue speaking.  It’s the only way I’ll get better.

Anyway, that’s all I have for now, and as I know my audience is limited, I don’t expect a lot of chatter on this, but if anyone has any thoughts or advice, sent it my way.  I always appreciate others poits of view.  Until next time….

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~ by James on October 16, 2016.

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