Is it time to repatriate?
We’ve been thinking about moving back to Germany for a long time now. I probably started thinking about it after being a couple years in California. But ever since there were always enough reasons for us not to move back yet. New job opportunities, new projects, kids settled in school, having good friends, happiness, the Californian climate, lots of travel destinations in close proximity, the diversity and tolerance in the Bay Area. But there were always many reasons to think about going back to Germany as well: Children have more freedom in Europe (especially when they get older) and living closer to family and old friends. Less of a meritocracy than in the Silicon Valley which means less significance of your possessions and salary. And for me personally going back to being a teacher in Germany.
Repatriating means to restore or return to the country of origin, allegiance, or citizenship.
Re-patriating for us would mean to actively make the decision to move back and to follow through. We’d have to quit jobs, take our children out of their schools, move all our stuff and then find new housing, new schools and new jobs in Germany. That’s hell of a project and it holds unimagined risks and difficulties for all of us. It is a tough decision. It is so much harder than moving to California for a few years of adventure. Now, after building a life here, you basically have to decide which life you choose for the rest of our children’s childhood. I know, you could always try to come back, but it’s not very likely to pull your kids out of school twice, especially when they are about 12 and 15 and are having a rough teenage life already. I’ve been saying for a while that I’m waiting for a sign that tells us moving back is the right thing to do. I was more thinking about a job opportunity, someone in the family in the need of our immediate support or something like that.
But now. This. Sign.
After this election the discussion about a move has become significantly more important in our house. Previously to the election, my husband and I were joking: “Well, if Trump becomes president, we’ll move back to Germany.” And here we go. This is not good. At least we are in California, which should be an example for the rest of the US. A melting pot of cultures living and working together pretty successfully and that is the 6th strongest economy in the world.
I don’t believe that this election will change the rhythm and connections in our daily life, but I’m not as confident as others might be that influential, more serious Republicans will stop Trump from running amok. And I’m not sure if I want to live in a country where so many people are obviously ok with voting for a racist, sexist and homophobic business man who has almost no political experience.
Is leaving the better option? I know there are racist and homophobic people in Germany, too. So, what to do now? Should this be one of the reasons that make us move back to our country of origin? I honestly don’t know. But I think it might be.
I’d love your comments on this one!
This post is a part of a series called NaBloPoMo 2016 hosted by BlogHer. NaBloPoMo is short for National Blog Posting Month and it challenges writers and creatives to post on their blogs once a day (at least) for the month of November. You can find all my posts on my blogher page, too. Stay tuned!