Tuesday, 7 May 2013

My Big Truth & Fear

I am absolutely boggled that 5 years has gone by and I'm still living in Scotland. When I look back on our time here I wonder where it all went. What was I doing?  I have a big truth to tell you. It's big and messy. Sometime's I don't like living here and I'm depressed.

I fear saying that out loud at the risk of sounding like I'm ungrateful. Oh poor me. I get to live in another country and try new things everyday. I get to meet new people and see places people only dream about. Whine whine whine. I know how it sounds and it isn't good.

It sounds so cruel. I'm doing things other are wishing they could do. I'm living this different life that other's wish they could experience even if just for a little while and here I am complaining. It seems as if I'm not counting my blessings. But, sometime's it is hard living away from everything I know.

I've struggled with depressed since 2005. I say that like it is on a timeline or something. But, it kind of is. My therapist explained it as situational depression. The situations I'm in play a part in how I feel. I've come really far since those dark days in 2005 and my great fear is slipping back into that dark hole and never surfacing again. Never being able to see the light. Sometime's I feel like I'm headed right back down that road and I'm trying with all my might to change my course. It makes me so tired.

Everything can't be rosy all the time and it isn't here in my life in Scotland. Sometime's I cry and crave to be near the things that I know. The things that make me comfortable and my support system. Then I'm afraid of crying too much because what if I never stop?

I'm not always depressed. Don't worry. Scotland feels like my normal now. As much as it can. I'm sure if I did move back to the USA it would be a huge shock to me. We made the decision to stay here and I'm pleased with that decision. I feel that it is right. But life isn't always greener on the other side of the fence ;)

This is my fear and my truth; Sometimes I don't like living here in Scotland and I'm depressed.

I'm participating in blog everyday in May.


  1. I know the fear of that hole - I've been there, too. I wrote about something similar today. I've also lived away from family for almost 11 years now (not in a foreign country, just in another state. I'm sure another country would be way harder!) It has gotten easier for me to be here; in fact, I really like it now. I hope you find a way to enjoy where you are better...and if medication is needed to help you get there, there is no shame in that.

  2. I think the ex-pat adventure is somewhat of an unrealistic fantasy. People daydream about it, but never consider the hard realities and sacrifices that come with choosing to leave everything familiar behind aand start fresh. In some ways, it's absolutely wonderful, but when you're going though something tough (depression, pregnancy, grief) it gets hard to be so far out of your comfort zone. I always hesistate to 'complain' (aka...be honest) because at the heart of it, I'm beyond grateful for the experience and opportunity, but sometimes it really stinks!

  3. I only experienced a fraction of what you are going through--back several years ago when we lived in Hawaii for an internship. Most people look at me like a loony when I tell them how miserable it was (and I am not joking!!)

    Take care, dear!!

  4. I don't think it matters where you live what you are doing. Most people get depressed at times. It's is just part of life.

  5. Thank you for being brave and sharing this. The truth of the matter is that living somewhere else and the excitement of it can only mask real life and real life feelings for so long. And no matter what you do, there are always trade-offs. I don't think your honesty means you are being ungrateful -- it just means you are being HONEST. It's okay to sometimes not be the happiest person ever... and depression is so tough. Somedays, "okay" is a victory. Thanks for sharing!

  6. Sometimes I don't like living here (Upstate NY) either and am depressed. It was really bad several years ago but I didn't realize how deep I was until things got better. Like I should have had meds involved- I can see that clearly now- but I didn't realize it at the time. I was so low!

    So I can't imagine living in another country (even though that's my fantasy). I mean, I'm on the same coast as my besties but several states away. So an ocean away...I totally get it! I don't think it's whining at all. It's honest.


  7. Friend, I know how you are feeling, and I've only been here for a few years. Know that you aren't alone in your feelings and that it is natural to have them. People who can't understand that its hard to live this expat life, have surely not lived it. To be so out of our natural elements, and then have to deal with life. Sigh. As much as it becomes normal for you because you have lived here for so long, you are still an American at heart and grew up that way for MANY years. Hang in there; and it isn't complaining or whining, its just talking about life. So feel free to do it. You've got my number too, right? Give me a call, I'm always willing to listen-even if I can't make it to darn Glasgow. :)

  8. Your blog has drawn me in because you're right, grass isn't always greener on the otherside, but blogging like this, I get to experience things through other people. I don't think that makes you weak to be sad that you aren't around your support system! Just one question... is your husband from there or what caused the move to Scotland?

  9. I am so glad I've found your blog today, Mary. :)
    Sometimes I don't like living here in Scotland either. I miss Italy (my home-country and where my family is) but I also miss the US (where hubby and I have lived for one year and have many friends). When we moved here I though that things were just different here, not wrong. Now I start to think that too many things are just wrong (probably coz I just had a horrible experience with my GP).
    From what you write I don't think you are depressed, tho... you just seem nostalgic and homesick.
    Take care and sorry for this wee "intrusion" in your world.
    Congrats on the lovely son you have.

  10. Mary,
    I started reading your blog a few weeks ago because my husband, kids and I are about to make a big move from Chicago to Aberdeen. I wanted to learn more about our future home through the eyes of other people (moms in particular) who have made the move there. I have loved seeing your pictures and learning about life in Scotland (good and bad). We too will be leaving absolutely everything and everyone behind and that is really scary! I am sure I will have many sad days as well. I don't think you are whining and anyone who does must not understand what a move like this means for you personally and your family left behind. I am particularly worried about my kids and how it is going to change the amazing relationships they have with their grandparents in particular. Anyway, just wanted to say, you are not alone! I too will be in your shoes in a few short months.

  11. Seriously, we need to be friends. I struggled with depression when I lived overseas (Italy) for a school year when I was 21. No one understood because they thought I had this fantastic opportunity... And then I was REALLY depressed when I came back. Not a fun year. But with the help of my friends and family and God, I got over it. Then after I got married (almost 7 years now) I had another bout. I had moved across country, quit my job, left my family and friends to be with the man of my dreams. Poor me, right? But everything was different. Oh, and we got pregnant 6 weeks after our wedding! Talk about change! So yeah, I feel you. And we stay-at-home moms are bad about taking time for ourselves and having a little space and perspective sometimes, so that doesn't help. Anyway, enough of my rambles, but thanks for sharing your reality. I hope we get to meet in person some day!