Coming to Terms With Emigrating to Another Continent

Hardest. Decision. Of. My. Life.

1922365_10152943179954432_3271093628021216038_nSurely it shouldn’t be, I’m moving to be with my soul mate?  It did nearly break us.  In the ‘early’ days, we know someone would have to give up everything they’ve ever known and make the 4000 mile journey across the pond.  We were at a stale mate.  It came down to one thing, despite spending close to 56 hours a week in my work van, I don’t meet the UK requirement in terms of what I needed to earn to be able to sponsor Jesse’s visa.  It was all down to me.

It’s not quite like deciding to move to mainland Europe or to go travelling for a few years, this is potentially a permenent decision putting me an 8 hour flight away from the country I grew up in and a whole bunch of people I love.

It’s scary.

THE GOOD

  •  Obviously this was the swaying point, I couldn’t now not imagine a life without Jesse.  I’ll be getting to set up a lovely little life, hopefully having lots of awesome experiences and adventures together!
  • The summers are hot.  RESULT!
  • As an obsessed travel addict, I’ll have a whole new world to explore right on my door step
  • There shouldn’t be too many culture shocks.  Across the years, I’ve spent close to 6 months working and travelling America, so it’s somewhere I’m familiar with and will already have a support network in the form of Jesse’s friends and family, I know they’ll alway be there to help me if I do struggle with anything 🙂
  • Space!!! Lots and lots of space!  Small town America = A house bigger than anything I would ever be able to afford in England.  I technically live in the country here, yet my 7 mile journey to work takes 30 minutes because the roads are so full.  The roads in Iowa are a pure joy compared to what I’m used to!

THE BAD

  • My family are my best friends and it will be tough leaving them behind.  I am fully aware that when I step on the plane, it may be the last time I ever see some of my family, it’s horrible.  It’s all well and good at the moment as my parents are young enough to travel and me and my sister both have spare cash kicking around to be able to travel, but what happens in the future when people get too old to make the journey?  Or if me and my sister end up with families of our own and will have to find money for not just a plane ticket for ourselves but maybe our other halves and children too?
  • We will miss important mile stones in each others lives and I refuse to be one of these people that leave and don’t see their family for years at a time.  I try not to think about it.  Technology will be a huge help though, thinking how far it’s come just since I was working in the US in 2008, it’s amazing how close you can feel to people now even though in reality there are miles between.

AND THE UGLY

  • PAPERWORK!  As a UK passport holder, I could easily live in pretty much any EU country, throw America into the mix and I now feel responsible for the destruction of approximately 1/4 of the Amazon Rainforest due to the amount of paper I have used printing off visa forms and evidence (and we’ve only completed a marriage visa and part one of the I-130!)  There’ll then be; medicals, police checks, new social security numbers, health insurance, new car insurance, new phone contracts, USA driving licenses, tax returns, bank accounts and probably a whole lot more I haven’t even begun to think of yet!  We get it easy in the UK!
  • Winters.  England comes to a grinding halt if it snows more than 1cm.  Iowa can get feet of snow just in one night.  I didn’t even realise places that aren’t the North or South pole could get as cold as -30c, Iowa does.  When I visited in March I thought ooo lovely the sun’s out, I’ll sit on the bench outside the terminal and wait for Jesse…I lasted all of 3 minutes before going to stand back inside in the warm!!

11041781_10153211543779432_5747942591623954998_n

  • The distances.  In a 3 hour radius, I can drive to something stupid like 7 big UK airports that fly all over the world.  I’m 20 minutes from London Stansted which is like a giant open door to weekend breaks in random European cities (I’m currently obsessed with city ‘old towns’).  In Iowa, the closest airport is 20 minutes away…yay!…but it only flies to Chicago.  The biggest international airport is, you guessed it, Chicago!  Which involves nasty connection flights or a 3 hour drive to get there, hmm!

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The other side of Immigration – Long Distance couple POV

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