My life here has gotten easier lately. I have made some new friends and am finally settling in to our home. Chris and I have built a routine and I'm growing to accept rather than despise all those things that are different. It used to be that I grasped at any excuse or reason for us to move back to Texas one day...and then it was "well, if I have to be here, why can't we move to the city." And then I realized that moving to the city would mean sacrificing the support system we'd built here in the Mackay region and starting all over again...and I found that I could actually be quite happy settling down in Sarina.
So which is it? It feels like no one place is a perfect fit.
Reasons for The City:
- I know that in order for me to get a degree and for Chris to pursue radio full-time we'd have to move to a city someplace....unless some unusually convenient circumstances popped up.
- Properties in the suburbs are much more affordable than in the Mackay region
- Convenience factor. Our kids would have every resource imaginable right at their fingertips, most state resources are centralized in the capital cities.
- Unless we moved to Brissy, we wouldn't actually know anyone in any cities. We'd have to start over again. (BIG con.)
- Too many distractions.
- All of my family is there, including most extended family. BIG PRO.
- I'm familiar with the culture, the system, the politics, all of it. BIG PRO.
- Cost of living is exponentially more affordable. i.e. If we bought a house there and paid it off while on Chris's current salary, it could easily be paid in full within 5 years. Less if I get full-time work. That would just be impossible with any and every property here unless we lived on baked beans and tinned spaghetti. ;) You can feed a family of 4 on under $100/wk where we struggle to do less than $150 for 2 people here. (rarely do)
- Education is valued far and above Australian standards. This is more important to me than it is to Chris and I think that's just my inability to shrug off my culture than anything else. You don't really *need* the same degree of education in Australia as you do in the USA, but I can't move past how low the standards are. It's shocking to me!
- My credit score is horrendous. If we planned on moving, we'd have to mortgage through an Australian bank or we wouldn't stand a chance. We'd have to set up a plan so our assets by the time we moved would cash in to buy at least one family car (shouldn't be a prob if we sell our Aussie cars and buy in the states...but still a con.)
- Chris would have to start all over. Everything that makes it hard for me to live in Aus. would make it hard for him to live in DFW. He'd have to find new employment before we could even think of moving and we don't even know how that would begin to work. BIG CON.
- The health care system is crap compared to Australia. We have the security here of knowing that if anything was to happen to one of us or our children that it wouldn't be a financial burden, I don't know if that will ever be true in the USA. This is a BIG con for Chris that he can't move past at the moment. We both definitely like the form of government here better than the USA.
- The economy in the U.S. is really unstable right now. No job is safe and that's an environment we don't really want to be a part of. Australia's managed to escape this whole global financial crisis unscathed thus-far and it feels a bit reckless to leave that security on a gamble.
- We would be near most of Chris's closest friends and some of his family. His parents would be about 2 hrs away (considered close by Aussie standards. ;) ) My closest friend in Oz, Ashleigh, would be right down the road. If I have to have babies in Oz away from my Mom and sisters, I want to be as close to Ashleigh as possible. She's a super mom and super friend and I get really excited thinking about our babies playing together. :) That support system is invaluable!
- It is only 25-30 minutes outside Mackay and Mackay is growing fast. It will have most of the convenience we could ever want in a city, while living in Sarina would give us the benefits and culture of a small town. It's the best of both worlds. :)
- I always wanted to settle down on a block of land in a country-style home. This would be living my dream. :)
- If the going got rough financially, Chris could always get a job in the mines short-term while we worked our way out of that rough patch.
- We have no idea where either of us would work at this point. Chris wants a full-time job in radio which, in theory, could be done from home or by renting studio time at a local station. Especially if his show was formatted in similar way to what it is now. We just don't know how possible that would be financially at this point. In the mean time he would still have to work as an electrician and he's not really very excited at the prospect of doing that forever.
- There are no universities nearby. This affects both me and our kids because they'll inevitably have to move away to go to uni and statistics say they won't be coming back. :( Most kids who go to uni. end up moving away to whatever capital city they did uni. in. It's the way of the world here and I hate the idea of that. I'd also be forced to get a degree online which isn't impossible or anything, it would just be REALLY difficult for a person with my traits to stay motivated with online classes. I'd just have to make it work of course, but it's def. a con.
Those are my thoughts. The common denominator between the 3 is employment, where would we work? And my degree. So, I think I should just suck it up and try taking some classes online rather than just assuming I would fail at it because erasing that factor from everything would make the choice a lot easier in the long run of things.
I think I'm scared to move to DFW because I'd have so much more responsibility than I do here. I'd have to teach Chris everything from A-Z and maybe even wear the pants for a while and I don't want to have to do that. Call me old fashioned, but I like that he's in control, making the plans, and bringing home the bacon. The idea that I might have to have that role for a while if we move to DFW is scary. We also have a security here that would take a decade to build up in DFW and that's scary too.
Bottom line is that, while part of me kind of does want to move to the city, most of me is happy to move from Moranbah and stay in Sarina forever. I think I would only move back to the USA if Chris got an amazing job opportunity and it was secured and signed for.... so much to think about. It's a long time before we have to go down that road though. :)