So where's the snow?

Muddling through in Austria; God, life and a small black dog

The pain of parting



I’d long looked forward to the arrival of Stef for Christmas, even though I knew I’d be boring her with all my health concerns – I’m the biggest hypochondriac ever since the menopause. I was quite stressed before Christmas, with so much to do, houses to get ready (and I really need to stop working with a sense of panic that we don’t have enough time to do the job) and the inexorable dog walking. Dave has got bronchitis again and can barely get out of the house without wheezing. I nver thought I would be on my own so much with the dog, so God gets the earache from me as I walk!

Any way, she arrived, and I was so happy with her there, loads to chat about and catch up with. Some of the days, I felt she could leave today and I wouldn’t be upset, I’m so calm with her here. In the past, when the kids have left, I’ve been reduced to a sodden heap in a couple of days, with stomach gripping grief. This time, I didn’t even think I was going to be struck. But as she bossed us away as the dog was whining and she had to queue, we left abruptly. As I walked the dog around the car park, it hit me like a punch in the stomach, I was silently crying, hoping none would see.  We did the usual parting  thing of texting each other while she waited in the airport and then when she was home.

But the next morning I was again a sodden heap as I walked the dog. It wasn’t self-pity. it was separation pain. I cried in the loo and in secret. But this time I prayed. Took the power of the risen Lord within me and rebuked it. Asked him to help me. And as I stopped thinking about myself, and began praising, the pain began to lift, In 48 hours I was through.

I know this may be something in my personality and I know I felt this even when we were in England, but I so deep down want to go back. Not forever, just more visits, so there is a balance. We’ve been here nearly nine years now and my homesickness is not going away. Last year was such a hard year, despite the dog coming into our lives. Dave seems to have found a niche with the Burg and will go back next year. There are so many things to keep us here,its in many ways a fantastic life, I’ve a few really good friends even if they are mostly english!  It’s the pain of missing the kids that slays me. Dave said he was so pleased I hadn’t had the miseries when Stef left – if only he knew!

So I havent really moved on from my last post. I began to think, maybe God means the situation is ok, I’m wrong so I should go, not alter my attitude!!! There’s the possibility of a part time year round job as a carer of old people, but with the Christmas break, I’ve not heard anything. Do I want to go on taking the dole so we are free to do a UK trip after the season? I somehow don’t see me teaching another English course.

So I’ve made a new year resolution to contact the kids more. Maybe in letting them go, I’ve let go too far. and its all too late. If I can find a balance it may be ok. The trouble is a lot of time, here doesn’t feel home, the UK is. Maybe I’m looking back too much.  God díd bring a lot of change in our lives last year, but nothing that resolved anything long term.

Anyone out there in blogging land has kids in another country, how do you cope???


Author: annarashbrook

English Ex-pat living in Austria, Christian, blogger (of course) writer, photographer, dog owner!

5 thoughts on “The pain of parting

  1. My children live nearby so I have no words of wisdom for you on that front. However, I am also going thru menopause and I can tell you it has been wicked for me. A lot of mood swings and anxiety and crying! I also spend a lot of time “giving God an earache” and have found increasing peace in practicing gratefulness and thanksgiving for all circumstances- not just the good stuff. But I also decided it’s ok to cry and have those feelings – it’s part of my journey even if it’s uncomfortable. Writing helps a lot, too. 🙂


    • Menopause, mine started after surgery and I’m sick of the symptoms especially the palpations which were awful,depression and awful tiredness, BUT i’m coming out of it, God has really healed me and having the dog and more exercise has got my energy levels boosted and I feel great, except when I overdo it and ignore the body’s warning signs! I’m so glad it doesn’t last for ever and that I never gave in and took hormones. Yes, practising thankfulness is such a way to healing, it takes your eyes off yourself and puts them in the right place! I’m a compulsive writer and blogging is a way of witness for me too! Blessings

      Liked by 1 person

  2. My daughter is an hour away at University and it leveled me when she left last year. I can’t imagine how hard your struggles must be. I will pray for you, and know that you are an encouragement to me in how you are so real with God and real with us about your struggles. I’ve given God quite and earache lately too. (love the way you said that!) Continue to cast your cares upon him, for He cares for you!


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