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Shamelessly telling it all

I miss France.  Period.

If it weren’t for Angel we would go back even if we couldn’t buy a house or live beyond paycheck to paycheck.  Why?  I fell in love with France.  I love France.  Yes, I am American.  Yes, I love America.  Yet, the lifestyle in America is empty.  There seems to be not much beyond all the materalism.  I understand that I am speaking from a stand point of living in Ohio.  Ohio is pretty boring when it comes to states.  I admit it.  I hope and I have the feeling that life in Florida will be much more exciting and meaningful.  However, it is still not France. 

It is hard now.  Both Vilay and I miss France.  If I didn’t have the posibility to be a teacher with all holidays and summers off I would never have agreed to come back to the States.  It is too hard to make a life here with four children if you are not in a job like teaching.   It is certain that I could not go back into bank management with four children.  It is too crazy.  We don’t have grandparents that can or would watch our children like other parents do.  We would have to put all of them at daycare until they were able to go to Kindergarten which is at the age of five.  On top of that most Kindergartens are only for half days.  So, they would still need to go to daycare for the remainder of the day.  I know neither country is perfect.  I know that others love life in America.  I know that it will all work out for us even if we don’t go back to France. 

My secret is that if I could do it all over again.  I would never have left France.  Never.  Even with the inequalities for an American woman with four children.  Such as a potential employer having the legal right to ask me how many children I have and their ages…which I still think is discrimination even if these companies have to pay money for each of my children.  That is the price of doing business and not a green light for discrimination.

I would give anything to walk in the streets of a small village again, to have a “real” bread, to hear the church bells ringing, to see people sitting at their windows watching the world go by, to walk my children to school through streets lined with history even with all the dog doo, to take our regular Sunday walks to and through Strasbourg which lasted for at least six hours, to take the kids to one of the little parks near our apartment, to hear French all around me every single day and most of all to have the feeling that I am alive and not just moving through each day.  Oh…and I would give anything for a small but effective French cafe!

Comments on this entry are closed.

  • Alison December 7, 2006, 6:45 pm

    What you are feeling is normal. Just keep your eyes on the prize, Pumpkin.

  • Wendz December 7, 2006, 7:15 pm

    Yes it IS nomal. I do feel your pain however.

    Last night I was missing home terribly but even through it all I knew I would never want to leave here. I love France too muvh and I love my life. As you said, there is LIFE here.

    Just stay focused Pumkpin – things will get better.

  • JLP December 7, 2006, 10:24 pm

    Pumpkin, I don’t want to rain on your parade but… I am an elementary teacher in Maryland. I have taught for 38 years and loved the first 19. I would not recommend teaching to anyone now. Most teachers I know are at school from 8 or earlier to 5 or 6 or 7pm and then have school work to do at home. At school there are many, many more kids with social, emotional, and behavioral problems and the paperwork is neverending. For me the god still outweighs the bad, but just barely, and I have no kids at home now to devote time too. And don’t forget the required extra courses to take in the summer to renew your certificate. Please-just check it out before you do it, maybe Florida is different.

  • Pumpkin December 7, 2006, 11:02 pm

    I know it is going to be hard the first year or at least until we get back out on our own and I am teaching which is my passion. These last few days have been hard for alot of reasons.

  • Mad William December 8, 2006, 12:03 am

    I have those same thoughts every day. I can’t wait to go back.

  • Julie December 8, 2006, 3:05 am


    Maybe you guys could start an authentic French Cafe?

  • Cathy Y. December 8, 2006, 9:53 am

    Pumpkin, please don’t feel too alone about not having help with the kids while you work. You are not alone. Not all kids have grandparents who would or could help them. For all intents and purposes Sarah doesn’t have any grandparents, with Philippe’s parents both deceased, my Dad living 1000 miles away, and my mother too dysfunctional to help. Even when I was with my Ex, before we had kids, his parents specifically warned us, “We will not babysit while you work,” (then we watched them break that rule when their daughter came up pregnant.) So I guess what I’m asking is that you not take it too hard or feel as if you are the only ones. Other people deal with difficult situations like this, too. Anyway, I have only been to France once, and Europe overall twice in my life, but I long to go back over there, so I can only imagine how difficult it must have been to life that life and then want to go back to it. I hope all works out for you, wherever you may be.

  • Pumpkin December 9, 2006, 2:54 am

    Mad William,
    Today was really hard. I kept seeing Strasbourg in my mind and all the memories were so vivid.

  • Pumpkin December 9, 2006, 2:58 am

    JLP, I know what you are talking about. I am sure I will have to take additional courses during the summer. However, I want to teach Kindergarten. It is the grade I am most comfortable with and I think most useful. I am good at teaching kids to read. I know it is alot of work but I think Kindergarten is not as demanding as older grades…at least I hope not. :)

  • Run Around Paris December 9, 2006, 5:02 am

    I, too, wish I had a fabulous French cafe close to home. I miss the serene feeling of sitting in a busy cafe, despite the noise and animation around me. There’s truly nothing like France – I completely agree.

  • Pumpkin December 10, 2006, 3:05 am

    Run around Paris,


  • Cheryl December 10, 2006, 6:08 am

    Try Chestnut Hill, Mt & Airy in Phila when you visit, or the near suburb just outside city limits of Elkins Park. It’s not Europe, it’s certainly not France, but it’s a fair American substitute. Random act of kindness from a stranger- try it..,

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