Preparing for my ever after: I'm Lesley and I’ve met my soul mate, Barry, had the fairy tale wedding and am now in the midst of  living happily ever after. I sometimes, momentarily, wish it was like everyone else’s happily ever after…you know…you meet someone, fall in love, date for a while, get married and then go straight in to your newlywed life. Um, yeah. That’s definitely not anything like mine. Although Barry and I have gotten married, we certainly are not typical newlyweds since we started out living our married life on separate continents. He in Ireland and me in the United States. Of course, we’ve never had the typical relationship. He’s always been in Ireland and I’ve always been in the U.S.throughout the our courtship. We’ve never had an actual dating life together as most couples do. Sure, when we would visit each other’s respective countries, we would go out to dinner or movies, but those evenings were few and far between. Thank goodness for commercial airlines and Skype, otherwise, we wouldn’t have made it.  Thankfully we made it and we actually got some press from our long distance relationship  too as you can see from the photo below.  Of course, the fact that I wrote a book very LOOSELY based on our relationship helped in getting the press attention.  

In order for Barry and I to be a normal married couple and live together, one of us had to move to a different country and that one of us was me.  So, now I've relocated to Ireland so top 'o the morning to ye and we actually get to live together like a married couple.

What a simple thing that is for me to say: “I moved to Ireland.” It rolls off the tongue so easily. However, there is nothing easy at all about moving since this wasn't just a move down the street; it involved a whole mix of planning, emotions and…boxes. I had to figure out what to do with my car, my belongings, and my cats (both of which came with me after a mountain of paperwork and vet visits are complete). Can I teach my Zumba classes once I get there? Yes, because I am. Will I adjust okay to a new country? Eh, getting there. Will I make new friends? Working on that, too.  Oh, no…will I be able to drive on the opposite side of the street? Haven't yet tried. Well, the list of concerns and questions in relation to this move goes on and on. But, I’ll stop them here as I feel an anxiety attack coming on at the very thought of it. I’m reaching for a paper bag to breathe in.

Planning for the move was not a problem. In fact, I’m probably the planning queen of the world. Yes, keeping everything organized in nice neat little folders is no problem. It’s these damned emotions that make it hard. These emotions won’t go into little folders and they certainly won’t arrange themselves neatly! The emotions have probably been the most overwhelming part for me. In fact, I’ve learned to live with (not happily) my panic and anxiety attacks I’ve developed over the course of the move, although now that I've been in Ireland for a while they have subsided a lot. The guilt, the fear, the excitement, the unknown…well, at least these are some of the emotions I’ve been able to identify as I find myself in this life changing situation. The other emotions are just in there swimming around all willy-nilly waiting for me to wrangle them in, which I hope I’m able to do.

As I settle into Irish married life and adjust to life in Ireland, I’ll post what’s going on, so you can join me on this journey as well, and perhaps, give me some advice when needed.