That's the question, right?
Here's the answer.
Yep, we're going home this summer. Jeremy got a very good job at the State Department and we anticipate we will be in Washington for two or three years.
And I am scared. We've only been out of the U.S. for four years - but all of a sudden it feels like a lot longer. When we moved to Moscow, my first child was just eight months old. I have spent almost my entire parenting life overseas and suddenly, that seems significant.
I should be clear. I am very happy that we are going to be able to spend time with family, that our girls and boy will get to know their relatives, get to play with their cousins. But my priorities have shifted during the last four years, and moving home brings with it challenges I wouldn't have thought about five years ago.
I think the things I am most apprehensive about are:
1) The relentless availability of stuff, and
2) GMOs and the general quality of our food.
On the first point, we have too much stuff. OK, so pretty much every American I know has too much stuff. But just how much, too much, stuff we have, is made clear to us in stark relief every day. Every day when I drive past the scrap-metal shacks near our house, I remember how much un-needed stuff is in my garage. Every time I slip a coin to the gypsy children begging on our route to school and look at their ragged scarves and dirty fingers, I think about all the toys that lie, un-played with, in our playroom. I send bags of stuff out of the house every few weeks, to shelters, to my housekeeper and to her neighbors. But it feels like we are still suffocated with stuff.
I know that, theoretically, this should be under my control. That I will just have to keep our trips to stores brief and infrequent. Here, we never go shopping for recreational purposes, and I have even cut down significantly on online ordering lately. It feels great, honestly. While in the States, though, I have definitely found myself going to Target just because I was bored. Maybe I won't have time to be bored. One can hope.
On the second point, I am not naive enough to think that we are not eating genetically modified stuff in Georgia. After all, they do import produce (even sweet potatoes from the U.S., for which I am very thankful). But I do think hormones, antibiotics and GMOs are fewer in our food supply here. I already told Jeremy we'd be spending a lot more on food when we go back to the States, as I will try to buy hormone-free and organic as much as possible. Our checking account is already quaking in fear.
So anyway, yeah. Back to DC in summer 2014. Ready or not.