Sunday, October 18, 2009

Another short vacation...

Now that we're back and in the swing of things after our U.S. vacation we're getting ready to go on another short little trip with the Aarssen family. It's the first trip with all of us together and I'm bit torn on how to feel. I'm excited to have the time with Marco and Sadie, all day, every day. I'm excited to spend some real time with Marco's parents and his brother, sister-in-law and nephews as we really don't get together often enough. The only thing I am leery about is spending 5 days in Dutch.

Now I know that may sound strange as I live in the Netherlands so why am I not spending 24/7 in Dutch already? Because we speak English at home (Marco and I speak English to one another, he speaks only Dutch to Sadie and I speak only English to her). I speak English at work. I speak English on my blog. We watch 99% of television in English. It's a rare occasion when I actually have to speak Dutch. When I'm out and about I speak Dutch, so in the shops or around the neighborhood walking the dog, and when I am with my in-laws I speak Dutch (they don't speak English, and neither do my nephews who are 6 and 8 years old) but it doesn't really give me a lot of Dutch time or practice.

If you've never lived in a foreign country or never been in a situation where you're not speaking your native language then you may not understand how demanding it can be (and intimidating at first, of course I'm past that stage after living here ver 5 years). I have to concentrate twice as hard at listening to what everybody is saying. I have to focus all of my attention if I really want to follow a conversation with multiple speakers. I have to catch what I can, translate it in my head (I've not mastered thinking in Dutch), think what I want to say, translate it in English and then try and spit it out. Generally by time this takes place the entire conversation has shifted and the well crafted sentence that I'm ready to blurt out is moot. It's mentally exhausting after a few hours. We're going for a few days.

It can be really good for my Dutch. Honestly, it's the best way to learn a language, to be forced to listen and participate, but it can take its toll on you as well. I've bought some Wieckse Rose, which is a fruity beer that I really like, and hope that it will help. I know the more my in-laws drink the better their English gets so hopefully the reverse is true. If anything I can always claim "hangover" and take a few hours for myself to recoup.

After vacation I get back to Universal for 4 more days or work, have a 3 day weekend and then begin my new job! I am so happy right now with the way things are going. I think I should be more nervous, and according to most people, I really should be more nervous, but honestly, I'm just not. I'm really looking forward to a new start, new challenges, meeting new people, finding my way and going forward that I just can't be scared or worried or nervous or any of those things. I guess that's a good thing, right?

As far as the weight loss efforts go... well, let's not talk about those right now. What? Sorry? Oh yeah, that IS the point of this blog. Okay, so my weight is not budging. Why would it? I'm not doing anything at all to get it to move in either direction. I keep thinking to myself "when I start my new job then THAT is the point where I get all of my eating/exercising stuff together. That's great but in my head I KNOW that I should be doing it NOW, already. And I am half assing it for the most part, eating healthy here and there, not eating healthy now and then, but I know myself and I know that for me it has to be all or nothing. Half assing this will not help me in losing half of my ass, which is, quite literally, how much I need to lose, half of my current weight.

Scary thought isn't it, that I could lose half of my body weight and be at a healthy, normal weight for somebody my height? A bit gross if you really think about it but hey, I'm not going to start down that self destructive path again, of telling myself how terrible I am and how disgusting it is or any of those other self defeating things that over weight people bash themselves with. I'm just not going to do it. Í am what I am, take it or leave it, and this is what I have to work with. It may not be the best, but it's all I have so what else can I do but accept myself "as is" and work on it.

So if you don't hear from me this week know that I will be back soon, with a positive message of weight loss efforts and probaby a pounding migraine from a weeks worth of Dutch lessons!

I hope you all have healthy, successful weeks.

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