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Hello. I emigrated to Ireland from NY 13 years ago with my lovely Irish husband. I lived in a very negative environment in Ireland for 12 years and then moved to a terrific suburb in Dublin and absoultly loved it. We have kids and had planned on returning to the USA for years and just kept the momentum going, although we hesitated because life was so enjoyable in Dublin. Anyway, Now in NY since July 07 and think I want to return ever since. The weather is soo nice here and the convienience... I probably would stay here in NY if it weren't for my children. I think they would be much better growing up in Ireland. We do live in a town with an "excellent" school system, but my gut tells me that it's not so good compared to what I have experienced. It does serve the gifted children well, but the average child goes into the background. As I type this it sounds to me so clearly to return, but I am frightened because for so many years I didn't like my life there. Any insight? I am so sick of going over it in my head ever since JULY! It's wearing me down. As a mother, I should just do what's right for my children. BUT life here is fine for them, they have all settled in well. BUT i don't want them to grow up and be like the average american I come across and don't have enough faith in my parenting skills to ensure that they will be part of the more productive and educated members of society. THANK YOU :)

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Hi Felicia,
Thank you SO much for your wise and eloquent response. Right now I am in Dublin for 10 days to make 'THE DECISON' and I am so scared to say a final YES to returning. At at the same time my logic is saying we should be here. It's amazing the fear I have and I am trying to strech and meditate to calm my thoughts but it's difficult. My difficult past here is definatly in the past and not in our future. I think the longing to leave Ireland for so long is still engraned in me and I am fighting something that has been built in to me. The place where we would settle in is georgous and has such a nice, very positive family enviroment, very good schools; it is ideallic except for the weather and a few other things that I can get around...!! The weather problem can be addressed by ensuring periodic travel to feel the sun throughout the year. You said figure out what truly brings joy and what causes unhappiness. I will contemplate that. I am also trying to pretend to be living here with my family at them moment and it is feeling quite good. I will be torn leaving my parents and sisters in NY again, but I am willing to do so for my sanity and my 3 boys and husband. We are fortunate enough to be able to 'get the best of both worlds' by living here and I just need to calm down and get through the fear somehow. I haven't been able to figure that out yet. I just heard that someone I knew (not very well) passed away suddenly at age 39 and it makes me feel that I really need to grow up and stop fretting, as I have a great family and husband AND CAN choose where I want to live...
Now, about you! May I suggest that if you can work it out that you come to Ireland for a month or 2 and try and get a good feel of living here before you up root your life. Or if/when you do move here, make it so that you can reverse your decision easily if you need/want to later. I totally get what you mean when you now feel your mind is streching! It's so liberating when you become free from something that has held you back for years and education stimulates your brain. What a feeling for you!! I am sorry that you have suffered so much and am happy for you that you have found improvement... The pull of family wanting you near can be very strong and it is soo difficult to leave them. I hope you will continue our discussion!
Hi Felicia
I am very happy to have found you to chat with, as someone who is outside of my life situation. It really does help to hear your opinion and acknowledgement and I am also happy that i might be able to assist you! Have you happened to have read Eckhart Tolle? I have 'A New Earth' beside me but haven't picked it up since I arrived in Dublin-too stressed...It's about being in the moment, rather than thinking of the past or things you have to do...and how clarifying it can be... The main player concept in my life is a new one to me, too. I am quite 'easy going' and just tend to go along with things but also I do stand up loudly if I don't agree or want, thank god! KNOWING strongly what I want, however, seems to be difficult to find. Turning 40 definatly has it's good points...I never wrote on this type of site before and is it bad to give my email to you so that we can get more into detail? Or are we able to see who reads it? I don't know... Anyway, back to our chat! Wow, comming over here for 12 weeks working would be BRILLIANT. Many apartments/houses are rented furnished with pots and pans, etc., so your move would be relativly smooth in that regard. You really have a calling for Ireland if you know your husband won't come...Perhaps you are thinking of moving for a year or 2? would your family visit you as well?
I need to make my decision by tomorrow night, as I need to make some changes with some arrangements we have set in place...I continue to go to sleep hoping that some clarity will arise when I wake up--It's not happening!!! I feel I am being too harsh on the US sometimes because I do know that there are many amazing, caring people there. I tend to be a half empty rather than half full kind of person and look at all of the negativity too much. Sometimes I do wish I was making a decision between 2 places like a warzone and paradise! That would soo easy...I also allow (what I find to be too dramatic) the media to bombard me with negative info. I much rather the news on TV to be presented non biasdly (is that a word?!) as presented by RTE or BBC. I am very sensitive and that doesn't help. In NY, I recently found the show you listed on your page, Out of Ireland. I am very happy that I found it. The host makes me laugh! You mentioned that you fret about your family in American city life. Can you go into more detail about that? Do you live in an area considered 'high crime' or in a comfortable neighborhood?
My husband who left Ireland when he was 17 would love to return but he also likes the lifestyle and convienence of the USA. He left Ireland last summer because of me. He would rather have stayed in Ireland. He is very willing to stay in the USA, I am very lucky to have him. He is staying out of this decision. What ever I choose, goes. I have my just turned 14 yr old who loves living in NY and I am ashamed to say, probably could be bribed with electronic goods to make his return to Ireland easier! School in NY is very social and he has made many friends. Then there are my 9 and 10 year olds (one of which is with me now) who would love to return, although they have settled well in NY and would continue to do so. So, all of that is easy, really. I do worry about the 14 year old, though. We are all very close and will do our best to support him in every way if we do return here as he would be going to school with kids he doesn't know. UGGGGG is it only fear of fear? do you have a crystal ball?
Hi Lisa-
I am very happy to correspond with you too! I am new to this type of correspondence as well, and have no idea how to block responses, so if you would rather correspond privately you can reach me at I am not overly concwrned with who sees my email address, because it can be changed if need be. Feel free to correspond as oyu feel comfortable and if you email me separately, I will naturally have the email address to respond.

I am interested in the reading that you mentioned. Sounds right up my alley, but truth be told, I read sometimes 100 or more pages at a shot for school and seldom get to pick up a book for fun--my, how I long to love the joy of an aftrnoon spent reading a book of choice! I will definitely try to look for it though. My oldest daughter reads everything and at 17 she blows my mind with her intellect and insight. My son, who is 24 hated reading when he was coming up, but he discovered a niche in suspense novels and actually was quite voracious before his son was born in November. Now he works very long hours and puts all his energy into his family--in fact, he is really busy getting ready for his wedding this May. I think it might not be the best thing, but he knows his own mind and heart, so I have stopped talking anything but "more full"
these days. You see I am very cynical, especially given my ridiculous background, so I too often see the negative first and for longer than the positive stuff-hard to break away from that too.
I am at 43, soon to be 44 in June, a very determined person, but some people mistake my strength of conviction for either weakness or abrasiveness. I try to be kind, but sometimes it is hard to let people push one too hard or for too long, and I have learned to push back. I also cannot allow anyone ot determine for me what I need to do-I guess I accept my knowledge of my own mind, and will kill myself to prove someone wrong when they insinuate I can not do something--how the heck do we know what we can do until we are faced with it? Abuse taught me that.
I must really sound crazy to talk about leaving my usband but not leaving him at the same time. we are committed to one another and have been trough an awful lot. I really love him, almost as much as I don't some days, but I always picture us in Ireland. He is terrified of flying, a fact I never knew before we got married. In fact we were married maybe three years when he revealed that he only went to Disney World with us (my three girls and I got the whole thing planned behind his back) because he couldnever face himself had something happened to us on the plane without him! I thought he was kidding at first, but looking back I realzed that he was unbelievably white and scarde looking an abnormaly silent going to and from--a total departure from when we were on the ground. I guess I hadn't noticed becauase of the kids, but he has told me he doesn't want to be there. For me, I think if the whole family goes, he still mioght never make it, and that makes me very upset. However, we have discussed him staying and maintaining his work (self employed home repair and feeling at 43 too old to start over in strange country) whike I go to school and figure out how to get a job teaching and also gett eh PhD. The program I want to get into looks new and exciting--NUI is hosting it with Trinity and Cork Unv.--called Text, Context andCulture, and I was enthralled by it because it pulls together my English Writing Undergrad (I have minors in Irish Studies, Religion, Hisotory and Psychology) and my Masters Education. It would be such useful work and also surely helpo me secure a history or english teaching spot--or so I hope. I could not do what I am doing without my husband and his rollercoaster support--he does a lot to help us stay afloat and would be lost without my kids--same for me. You see, my three oldest are not his by birth, but my youngest is and in spite of that, he has been the onloy father my daughters have ever known. He ad my son have issues, but that also goes back to a time when my son was breaking away and I decided to marry--long story and I will explain it better some time, but it is not for this board.

Because my job is in Philadelphia (I work and attend the same University),and we live here about 15 minutes outside the city \in one direction and 15 minutes from my job the other direction, it is hard to break out. We have neighbors tat are absurd, and it has become increasingly apparent that we need to move. My husband and neighbors have argued about to many things for this site, but he is not one ot put up with things just because someone says oyu have to--for example, my neign=bors on either sie smoke and smoke heavily to the extent that we cannot have an open window or door in the nice weather season and the kids cannot even sit on the porch. We gave up smoking, don't drink at all or do drugs, the olatter two having been issues for the hubby many many moons ago. I never had his issues, but I figure I love him more than a cocktail and if it helps him never go backwar, so be it--even when I was out of range overseas, I found that my word is my bond and I pub hopped wiit the best of them, but drank orangejuice and 7up in a tall iced glass the whole time. I liked that it made people feel comfortable thinking I was drinking cocktails and I could nurse the daggone thing for as long as it took--it costs a lot more to drink that way that the stupid cocktail or beer. haha

I wa thinking about clarity and it seems ot me that you are far braver and ready than you give yoursefl credit for. I mean, you married and went over and LIVED. When it was time to roll back, you did, and now maybe it is or maybe it isn't time to go back, but from your earlier description you indicated an environment that truly sounded like it answered many lingering questions just on that end. If your husband is amiable and being suportive no matter what, you have an incredible mate and someone who realy understands oyur needs. Seems ot me that he has made the jump too and it might not have been easy, but he is willing to do what works for oyu, and if oyur younger childen are on board, yu are more than halfway there. So far as the 14 year old gent in your life, here is my thought--I have a 14 year old daughter who is in CAtholic School and wants to remain until she graduates, because for the first time in her life she is finding things that actually challenge her on al levels and she is building a base of friend sthat NEVER existed for her ever in her life. My oldest daughter went through that but is ready to move whenever as she is not going straight to college (think I told oyu this-maybe not). Anyway, consider this: if he could be bribed with electronic goodies o anything in reality, tha maybe he is not as attached to NY as oyu think. For my daughter, her freshman year was something out of this world and she wnats ot finish in one school--she also went to 4 grade schools and is entitled to have one highschool to soothe past feelings--I am cook with that as it suits what I am working on too. With your son, it is important to hear him out and possibly make allowance sif need be--like maybe allow him to stay with your folks/sister until school is out if he feels he needs to. The doenside of that is he has to meet the kids his age over summer in Ireland instead of making attachments before school is out. Kids adjust as my daughter has proven to me over and over--even my oldest gave up8th grade in one school in order for all three of my girls to be able ot attend the same school for her 8th grade year and she took th highest honors in the class and has never looked back.

I kind of think you will know in your heart when you have to offer a decision what will be bet for oyu and yours, so stop fretting. You can do anything and you have demionstrated this already by making the leap here form there. This time will likely be different on either side of the sea, because the difference is in yourself--if you feel you need chage, you know what to do or else you would not be in Dublin right now?? Write back soon. Slan
I forgot, I tried to invite you as a friend to add to my buddy list, but haven't been able to add oyu for some reason-odd.
When you say a "very negative" enviornment..what do you mean ?
Please dont take offence but I find that lots of Americans spend far too much
time agonising over all sorts of things. Time is marching on and wont wait for you
to make your mind up! Schools in Ireland are perhaps the best in Europe and certainly
far far FAR better than the USA. Crime is lower. Convenience ? you mean been near
a supermarket, a mall ?? there is more to life than that !
Gus, I won't get into the reasons of the very negative environment, but you can be assured I won't be going back there. It's my memories of that environment that I can't seem to shake off because they were for such a prolonged period compared to my short time in Dublin. I should have moved out of there much, much sooner than I did.
Of course I am not talking about the convenience of a supermarket or a mall, you are joking, right!? I am referring to being able to get around an area without being stuck in traffic; for living in an area with a well designed infrastructure. It's such a pleasure to do everyday tasks and to work in our line of work here in NY compared to a very congested Dublin. Being assured a bed in a hospital if needed would be convenient, too. I do love Dublin, however and look forward to the day when it's infrastructure problems are resolved or close to it...
In relation to schools, I am lucky as I am living in an affluent suburb of NYC and the schools are much better than the average school in the USA, (offering science programs, etc.) -BUT I still think that the particular schools my children went to in Dublin were better. My feelings now: as we are here in NY now and the kids are settled, we should give it more time and see what the summer brings.


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