Where do I begin…I guess there is lots to feel guilty about as a mother and always wondering if you are doing the best for your child. And please know that you are. You are their mum and you know what is best for them. Never doubt this.
But in this case I am feeling guilty for a very different and hard reason. Being a Canadian now living in New Zealand, I am feeling very guilty about my family and all of the things they will not get to experience with my children (I say children as I know we will be having at least one more). It eats away at me somedays and it can be really hard. Sure Skype is great and at least they get to see my little bubs grow up a bit, but its the moments that they will miss out on and so will Little Miss A. No Sunday dinners at Grandma and Grandpas, they won’t be able to come out on a Saturday morning and watch her play rugby or netball or whatever she chooses to do. No sleepovers at their cousin’s and growing up with each other. This is what makes me sad and feel guilty. I loved all of these things growing up as a kid, and to know that my daughter and future children only have one side of their family in the country makes it really hard.
We are lucky enough to be travelling there in September, but it is 24hrs+ trip just to get there, and with a 7 month old it will be a rather interesting trip. I am excited to see everyone and visit, but again it will not be the same as if we were living only an hour apart. But this was a choice I made when I decided to move over to New Zealand and I have to live with it. My grandparents left Europe to move to Canada at a time when the Internet and telephones were not mainstream. My Grandmother told me she left Holland thinking she would never see her parents again. That is a hard thing to fathom. I left Canada for New Zealand knowing I would be able to skype with my family whenever I wanted and travel back and forth (perhaps not as often as I’d like, but still doable).
After Little Miss A was born, my parents and grandparents made the trip over to see us and stayed for a month. It was great to be able to share our new baby with them and our home. We had moved to the farm and no one had been over yet – so they didn’t really understand all of the things I was talking about and where we were living. But now that they have been here I feel a bit more connected to them and know they feel the same as well.
They will watch Little Miss A grow up through emails and pictures and videos and skype. It is not quite the same as being there hands on and being able to be a part of the things she does, but at least I know I can share some of the magical moments with my family and friends back home. And I will cherish the visits from them and know that the majority of our family holidays will not be exploring exotic new places, rather travelling back to my roots and letting my children learn a bit about their other heritage and family. This is important to me that they know were they come from and that they are loved on both sides of the world.