Ya know I used to watch the show Growing Pains when I was younger and think they have such an awesome family… what you don’t see is all of the compromises, feelings and stress that goes into managing a family that big.
Ok I get that they have step siblings and that bring a whole new twist to things that I don’t understand because I don’t have that. However we do have our own twists that weigh on your heart and make things seem impossible from time to time.
Something that all families who are split between two countries struggle with is not being there for all the important stuff. Sometimes it’s easy to travel there and back but for us it is not. We are still at a point in the immigration process that has lots of rules and hoops. You also have to get used to the feeling that you are always missing something. If we are in the States we are missing our niece and nephew growing up. We are missing quality time and random conversations sitting on the front porch at night and amazing meals with family. When we are there we are missing sitting on the porch in the afternoon, US and Christian holidays creating a new life together. No matter where we are we are missing out on the things that pop up in life like marriages and funerals.
All of these struggles come with some real feelings and those feelings are strong. To make it through with a stronger relationship you really have to open your heart and trust your spouse. You have the let them feel the hard things. Sometimes you have to give them their space and let them come back when they are physically or emotionally ready. It is hard to watch the person you care about most struggle and not be able to help them.
What is all comes down to is Family Growing Pains. When two people from two different places with two different religions and different languages and they get married it will take real work to create your foundation. But it’s worth the rich relationship that comes out the other side.