Thursday, March 11, 2010


I grew up in Saint John, New Brunswick.
I moved to Toronto when I was 15 to live with my dad.
I returned to NB when I was 19.
But I moved back to Ontario only a year and half later.... Ottawa this time, with my then boyfriend, now husband Mr. Newman. :o)
Now we are in the USA.
My point is that I have lived away from "home" more than I lived there. But that is where my family is from and lives. It's my blood. And the familiar.

Raising my kids so far from family is hard sometimes. I didn't have any help when my babies were born. I miss out on anniversary and big birthdays and graduations. I wasn't there when my great-grandfather was sick. I'm not there now to help my aging grandparents.

I tell people constantly that they are welcome to visit. But New Brunswickers typically don't like to travel. I know this but it still hurts. I miss them and since having kids, we stopped travelling up as much as we used to. I sure would love to see them more.

My kids will grow up not knowing their grandparents, aunts or cousins the way I did. It hurts my heart when I think of this. And when my kids have a birthday and only get two phone calls from Canada.... that hurts too. I feel forgotten. I feel like my kids will never feel "a part" of family. And it's sad.

I'm writing this to say to those of you who have family far away... write them! Call them! Email them to simply say HI. It makes a big difference and it makes people feel remembered and loved.

As for the flip side of things and to end on a positive note, I have the most amazing friends here. My kids are growing up with other kids and it's the start of friendships for life. I am grateful for the local support. I have 7 people willing to watch my kids when I go into labor! I know that God uses people to show His love and I feel it! I am blessed and I am grateful. And it's only in God's love that I am NEVER EVER hurt or disappointed. I need to keep my eyes on Jesus especially in "storms" like these.


Jessica @ This Blessed Life said...

I agree - I feel the same way a LOT.

I also have a hard time feeling like "home" really is anywhere specific. Since Cedarville, I'm not exactly sure where I fit in anymore! Sad but true. Of course Chris and Luke are my family and "home" but sometimes I do get envious of people who have all of their family and friends in one place instead of scattered around the country (or world!) like I do. Guess I'm venting, too. :)

pollyandaleczmom said...

Mary, I know how you feel being far from "home" and feeling sick that your little monkeys will not have the same relationship with their grandparents as you did growing up.

We came to Atlanta when Polly was only 3 weeks old and have been here ever since. It is true, you don't have the "help" that you would have if you were in Saint John, but I feel blessed for the skills that I have acquired being way down here all alone ("alone" being such a relative term).

I am much more adventurous and capable in many different situations than I feel friends who have and rely on all of this help are. I often feel sad, as you do, about the relationships that I feel Polly and Alec are "missing out on" by our being so far from home. But, then I consider what a different mother I would be if I were at home and what different little personalities my children would have.
I agree that people in NB tend not to like to travel as much as we are accustomed to. AND, once you leave the province they almost feel as though it is YOUR duty to come to them if you want to visit. This can be endlessly frustrating.

So, I just pop the telephone on the counter while the kids and I are making dinner and hit the speaker phone button. We talk to Nanny and Grampy and Meem and Grand Dad every night. It is certainly not the relationship that I knew growing up, but it is their relationship. And it is a very special one to everyone involved!

We plan to move back home within the next 5 years but I worry about that too!! I have grown so accustomed to just being able to hang up the telephone and carry on with my way of doing things... I worry about how our lives will be impacted. But I'm also super excited to see what God has in store for us!

Anonymous said...

Totally get this. I feel rejected by family living in our home country. Forgotten, to be sure. I have cried many a night, wasted many years wishing for something geography wouldn't lend itself to and apparently human spirits didn't want.

I will choose to respect our children's choices and love them wherever they choose to live and put effort into making sure they know that we think about them and care for them. I wish I could say this because of a positive example, but I learned this because I will NEVER repeat what my extended family has justified doing, ever. In this day and age there is no excuse not to be connected.

Hey, do you love the Rankin's music?

Anonymous said...

Aww hun...I do feel for you...and totally understand where you are coming from!! Stay strong and don't let this get you down! I wish we could have stayed in better contact throughout school yrs! You've become a very bright & beautiful person/wife/mommy! My sister's husband is from Ontario and he lives here in NB, so they kinda have that distance as well. It is hard, and like you said a phone call, or letter anything is better than nothing at all when you can't be there in person! Hope things get better in that dept for you!!!!