We Skype with my parents nearly every day, normally around dinner time.
We just try to make sure Alexander can tell them about his day. With both Grandparents living quite far away, we don’t get to see them very often, so I do whatever I can to make sure that Alexander maintains a strong relationship with them.
Almost 14 years ago, I moved away from my hometown. Until then I’d lived within driving distance from my parents but then my parents moved abroad and I joined them. It’s actually where I met my husband and suddenly because of a great job opportunity for my husband, we decided to pack up and move thousands of miles away to Paris. My parents are back in Holland now, so they live within driving distance but now we are about to pack up our stuff including their only grandchild and move thousands of miles away again!
Living away from your home land can sometimes be tough, I like to believe it’s the best decision for our family and it continues to show us many blessings, but I would be lying if I told you that I don’t sometimes regret being that far away from my family and the support network it affords.
I watch grandparents as they pick up their grandchildren at school everyday. I have my friends tell me that their children are spending the weekend at their grandparents so that they can have the weekend to themselves. Holiday dinners are just a quick drive away. In a pinch with the children? They just call family. There have been so many times when I wished I could just pick up the phone and call my mum and dad and know that they’d be right over to help.
Last week my husband was away with work. I came down with the worst stomach virus I think I’ve ever had, one of those viruses that no matter how old you are makes you want to call your mum and have her come over to take care of you. But she couldn’t. Because that would require her hopping on a plane or train, with all the time, money, and restraints that go into that.
I know Alexander misses it, too. When we go and visit both my parents’ house and my in-laws’ house, he never wants to leave. He cries on the car or train ride home, begging to stay just one more day.
While I know that moving even further away is the right choice for our family, it doesn’t mean that I can’t have just a little bit of regret. Technology is wonderful, but it doesn’t replace that connection that we get from seeing them face-to-face.
I’m in my 30s, I still miss those days of having my parents around all the time. Now that I am a parent and see how much joy my child get when they have their grandparents around, I know that they miss them, too.
Do you live far away from your family as well? How do you deal with this?