That is how I felt when I posted this back in August of 2011:
I was still fairly newly repatriated and I was still fairly raw about the entire experience, mostly due to the fact that the three most important souls in my universe (Hubs, Daisy, and Mills) were four thousand miles away from me.
I'm reminded of that post because now, a year and change later, Simon is here and I've been back from my expat adventure almost two years...and I still have moments where I'm not sure where I am or, even better, where I belong. I still have moments where I struggle to make myself understood and have the urge to go all Tanzanian Chimp (see? There is a Big Bang Theory reference for EVERYTHING) on someone that giggles if I say wheelie bin instead of trash can.
We have a new captionist on staff here who loves all things British and I have to say I'm probably rambling on and on to her more than I should, bless her, but she gets it and that's cool. Andrea, if you're reading this, ta very much. I still say lift sometimes, I still say mobile, and I still ring people up if I absolutely have to do so, and I don't imagine that will change much.
But last night there was a new experience to add to my list of "only other US/UK expats will get this" weirdness: Last night we saw the Black Watch and Band of the Scots Guards at the BiLo Center and as any good British programme does, it included Jerusalem, the hymn that is the unofficial national anthem of England.
Y'all, I got teary listening to it. I almost let out a choked sob. The feeling of belonging but not belonging, of home and homesickness all happening at the same time was just overwhelming. Hubs got a bit of a giggle out of it, not of my distress but of how surprised I was at said distress, I think. These were "my people" due to my Scottish ancestry, but they were also "my people" because they were British and I feel like I was getting close to that, for a time anyway.
I said on Facebook: "Well, it happened. I teared up at 'Jerusalem.'" The only people who have liked the comment are expats or have them in their lives.
And did those feet in ancient time.
Walk upon Englands mountains green:
And was the holy Lamb of God,
On Englands pleasant pastures seen!
I would like to say when, but for the time being I will say if...IF we make it back to live in the UK, they will have to burn me out to make me leave a second time. It is my second home...and I can't wait to go back for a visit, at least.