the new normal

I’ve been overseas many times in my life. Sometimes I got sick, but most of the time I didn’t. This time I’m overseas with three little kids whose bodies can’t quite get adjusted to some of the new “input” being received and it’s making them sick. Out of the 14 mornings we’ve woken up here, half have been spent taking care of upset tummies. Every morning, if it hasn’t already woken me up, I wake up wondering whether or not we will be sick today. It’s such a terrible feeling.

This morning I thought we had managed to dodge a tummy problem and work on the looming task of gathering stuff for our new apartment. I was getting ready to go when I heard that all-too-familiar sound. Katie was sick. Again. So instead of shopping for home furnishings I took an impromptu trip to the pediatrician’s office because I’m tired of not knowing what’s going on with my child. Not a parasite or a virus, so we know what it is not. Great, so what is wrong? Without a “sample” it’s hard to be sure, but she gave me some anti-vomiting/nausea medicine and orders to avoid all liquids early in the morning. We’ll see.

So, we press on. We try to acclimate and establish some sort of order out of chaos. It’s hard. I like order, structure, and especially rules. There are rules here, but not for things you naturally expect. Cultural rules that I’m sure I brake all the time because I don’t know they exist yet. So the new normal is to expect the unexpected and try to be more flexible and most importantly, avoid having too many expectations about anything. Easier said than done.

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