Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Saying Goodbye

The ugly part of being an expat is the goodbyes. You become an expert in saying them, accepting them, and muffling the cries in an airplane pillow.  It just becomes a fact of life.

So where does that get us?  Personally, I`ve gotten to the point where I can almost convince myself that I am not upset.  The force is strong in this girl.  You see, I don't want to live "home" anymore.  That part of me is so little it gets drowned in the semi-occasional Brazilian beers, though that does not mean that I miss my people at "home" any less.

Tomorrow is Mom's last day in Rio. I have to say, we've had a LONG trip together this time around. 7 weeks at her place and 3 at mine is enough for most.  I am ready to get on with my day to day life as normal, and I say that with a sigh.

It's true that you can't live in this vacation mode forever. It's exhausting to entertain and enjoy the city with even the mellowest of visitors.  But there's also the 'it's over' factor.

This visit is done.  The togetherness was wonderful and we definitely didn't skimp on it this time around. It's time for the simple dynamic of the boys, Mr. Rant, and I. We need to get back to our norm, our friends, and our play dates.  Part of me actually looks forward to it.  Sorry, but I enjoy Mr. Rant walking around in his boxers.  Call me crazy, but that's just not Mom visiting appropriate.

But my parents don't live down the street. We live so far that they can't even splurge on a weekend visit.  So my Mother leaving means another year apart. It means my youngest will be 3 and my oldest will be 5 the next time she and my Father see them.  My parents will come and they will meet different little boys.

Sure we do skype, email, and do phone calls. Boxes, photos, and videos on facebook are a regular part of life.  We are as virtually connected as the world can possibly stand.  But it's not the same as "Your Mother just called. They are coming over... again."  You just can't fit enough annoying in a vacation, even 2 months of it, to make the other 10 go by fast enough.

So I will bust out my steady chin again tomorrow.  Mom will sob like a small child. She's done steady chin enough.  She deserves the cries.  Then I will go back into my small Brazilian apartment and see her gone. I will go to her room the next morning and see that she is still not there.  I will shed an over dramatic tear as I am now. And I will go on.

On a cup half full note, her leaving does seem to make my small and cluttered Brazilian apartment look that much bigger and emptier. But that's just like her, coming in and fixing things up so that they are that more comfortable for me after she has left.

She's a Mom like that.

And I'm really going to miss her.


  1. Super sniff-sniff. I feel the same way when my Mom visits. Thank goodness we're all able to travel back and forth when able and to share the new chapters of our lives. Time passes quickly, before you know it you'll be planning your next trip. Bright side. Omg, I'm almost crying now. You have a wonderful family. Parabens, smiles and everything good.

  2. Danielle mentioned on a recent post, forget all the little food stuff and amenities we miss from our home countries, family is the biggest impact when it comes to missing home...
    Hope you enjoyed your mom and see her and your family again soon.


  3. My little girl suffers a lot when "vovo'" has to leave from the Brazilian airport. She gets sick for a couple of days, really ! My boy (7) after three weeks in Brazil starts to comment he misses "his own little room, toys and all things from Holland". I hope my parents this year come to Holland and spend at least 5 weeks or more.

  4. aw, you can do it. get a cup of tea. you've got your reasons for being apart from her (boys, husband) right around you so it makes it easier. i haven't seen my mom yet since moving here. first time will be after 18 months. then 6 months after that she will come here for the first time (we hope!) 10 weeks is a great visit, even families that live in US dont spend that much time together throughout the whole year! but i am sure it is a lot harder for her because of the kids. getting back to life is normal, dont feel guilty for desiring it!

  5. Thanks for sharing your mom with me. She's terrific. I'm sad she is going too.

  6. I'm sad I'm going as well Jim... but I will come back and it's time... I enjoyed meeting you...keep in touch!

  7. Ugh, total sniff. Ever since I left my parents in Va the other day Ive had a bit of a sunken heart. Love what you said about theres not enough annoying in a vacation to get you through the next while... I think it gets harder as I get older knowing the realities of them getting older... big lump in my throat here at the coffee shop... glad you got to have such a long time with her!

  8. Skype does help a bit, I mean we can't hug through skype, but it does help. A little. (I try not to think about the missing, the hole in the gut emptiness....)