There are moments in life when it’s clear that the decision you’re about to make will affect the rest of your life. When you have a family, you have to cast the dice on what is best for you, your partner, and your children. It’s such an impossible task, a huge responsibility, and nothing can prepare you for it.

That was exactly the kind of situation my husband Diego and I found ourselves a few months ago. It took us countless evenings of pondering, discussing, arguing, and fighting. Then planning, swaying, rethinking, and replanning. But eventually, we reached a resolution.

And here we are today, surrendered by boxes and empty shelves. Where once were furniture, now there are only dents in the carpet. They are deep marks, indentations that won’t easily disappear. We have been at this crossroad before, but not as a family.

We have sold our much-loved family home, and most of its content too, because in a couple of months we’ll say farewell to this country and head back to Italy.

I’m overwhelmed by the conflicting emotions this change brings up, and I find it really tricky to explain how I feel. Excited, afraid, happy, worried, panicky, overpowered and so much more all at the same time.

We will have to figure out how to bring a bit of England back with us. For our son, this place is part of who he is, where he was born. We don’t want him to forget his origins. And for us, after almost 20 years, this place is part of who we are too.

This decision has the potential to be one of the hard conversations waiting for us in the future. Since becoming parents, at every turn, we have been finding ourselves wondering how we’ll justify our decisions. Adoption gives even more chances for difficult conversations. Every word exchanged in contact letters with birth parents and relatives has to be chosen carefully, because we are keenly aware that one day our son will judge us on those words, and the choice we took for him. This time is no different.

I don’t know how I will explain to my son Ben that, although moving to Italy with us meant sacrificing part of his heritage, it was what we thought was best for him, and in the process he gained a life surrounded by a larger family. That we didn’t intend to hijack his life, or tear him away from what happened in the early part of this life story. We will always support his relationship with his birth parents and brother, correspond with both of them, and never forget about them. Moving doesn’t need to change everything.

We are striving to make this move as smooth and stress-free as possible for him. Our little Ben is enthusiastic and he’s already planning what to sell and what to take with him. His telling his friends about the big lorry which will collect all our stuff, and the plane that will take us in the new house.

I heard a song playing on the radio not long ago. It fitted so perfectly well in our life. I want to believe that those words are true, that what matters in the end is just being together, no matter where.

Cause they say home is where your heart is set in stone
Is where you go when you’re alone
Is where you go to rest your bones.

It’s not just where you lay your head
It’s not just where you make your bed
As long as we’re together, does it matter where we go?

(Gabrielle Aplin – Home)

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