Sunday, March 13, 2016

March 13, 2016 - On the Road Again

Extra, Extra, Read All About It!
After 8 1/2 years in East Africa, we are moving to America!

Kristoffer's job is being transferred to World Bank HQ in Washington, DC and we'll be looking to buy a house in the greater DC Metro area.  There will be so many wonderful perks of moving to America...and some brand new challenges for our family as well.  Kristoffer and I were just married and had only lived together in DC for less than 5 months when we moved to Kenya...so going back +3 will certainly be different!  We are very excited (and I am pretty emotional - no surprise there) about this transition.

We told Grace and Noah yesterday morning (Aya was present, but not particularly interested in the conversation) and their reaction was overwhelmingly positive.  They were jumping up and down and cheering!  Noah had a small, sad moment when he was afraid that all of their toys would not fit into their small personal suitcases, but we assured him that everything would be going over to America by boat and he can pack all the toys he wants. Phew!  [We didn't tell them that we'll likely pack out in about 5 weeks...]

We also talked about how things will be quite different for us without having staff in America - no Oliver or Christopher!  Noah said that they will have to start to make their own beds (yes!) and that Mama and Far will have to start to cook (uh oh!).  

At the end of the day we had an amazingly sweet moment with Grace - I wish I had recorded it! - where she told us that all day long her brain had been preparing a speech she could make on her first day of school in America so that she could introduce herself to everyone.  And she asked if she could practice the speech.  Well, let me just tell you, it was outstanding! It went a little something like this:

"Hi, my name is Grace and my birthday is February 26th.  I was born in Kenya and just moved here from Tanzania.  My Dad is from Denmark and my Mom is from America.  I went to a school called IST.  I have a little brother who is 5 and a little sister who is 2.  I like to play tag and to swim and to play soccer and I like dinosaurs and reading.  At my school we learned Kiswahili which is the language they speak in Tanzania and I also liked to do PE, music, art and to go to the library.  I hope that some of you will show me around the school and play with me when we have play time. I want to make a lot of new friends."  

Just the fact that in a mere 10 hours Grace could make that jump from "we're moving to America" to "I'm going to have to introduce myself to everyone..." completely blew my mind.  After we heard her speech, Kristoffer and I pretty much looked at each other and said, "She's going to be just fine!"  Of course we can't exactly predict the tough, emotional moments that we're all going to go through, but it is a total blessing that the concept of moving is super common in our world and that for years our kids have seen other kids go through the exact same kind of transition.   I anticipate that the next year is going to be a roller coaster, but we're ready for a change and can't wait for the ride to start!

LMW

p.s. When we leave, to blog or not to blog?  That is the question! 
(Since I'm not doing a great job of it these days, it seems like a good time to close up shop.  But let's see...we might get some really good stories out of this move!) 

3 comments:

Amy M. said...

Hi there! Exciting that you're off on another adventure. I've been reading your blog here and there over the past couple years, dreaming of the day we move back to Tanzania! We are headed for a 3 week trip in August with our son who will be 20 months old. Do you have a car seat you're looking to sell/get rid of?

The Welsien Family said...

Hi Amy - thanks for writing and for reading along all these years - not sure if you'll read this comment but I have no other way of getting in touch with you :) I won't have a car seat for his age to sell, sorry! But hope you have a fun trip to Tanzania - August is the BEST weather! If August-Dar was year round, I think it would be harder to leave!

Unknown said...

Thanks for the reply! We may just deal with the hassle of bringing one along and then leaving it in Dar with my inlaws for future trips. Good luck with the move and transition to life in DC!