My name is Dielle, and I currently live in the middle of nowhere France. Originally, I am from the United States. I moved to France to be with (and incidentally get to know) my British husband. I started International Daze shortly after meeting this man who happened to live in France. I began writing of our experiences navigating the maze of love across borders. It was my way of unraveling the absurdly complicated world of immigration, relocation, and all things even remotely related to ending an old life and starting anew in a completely foreign land. It was about feeling through the tough decisions one must make, the struggles to comprehend laws and regulations, rules, and structures, and the hurtles (and blessings!!) that come with differences in language and culture.
After a two-year nightmare of focusing on the problem of how to be together, and after just 11 months of finally doing it, we discovered we had a lot less in common than we thought! Alas, I had made the bold move to risk it all to discover this. Rather than beat myself up about it, I decided to take in the lessons by refocusing on myself, my strengths, and my purpose in order to open to the possibilities and allow what comes next…this time focused on solutions instead of problems! Now this blog is no longer about love across borders but what happens to one’s identity in a foreign land and the challenges it presents in relationship. It’s about learning to embrace where one is while at the same time being open to where one may end up after all. It’s about the challenges of the expat life, isolation in the foreign countryside, dealing with depression and loss of self, learning the lessons, and moving on.
All the old documentation of our coming-together process from visas, immigration, taxes, moving, financial planning, to all those hoops through which one must jump are all still here. And now, add to the mix the harsher realities of marrying someone you hardly know in order to get to know him, of going through an absurd amount of bewilderment and grief to find one’s self again, and of the letting go into what can never be known.
I recently shared with a friend that I didn’t feel ready to write about my story yet. Sometimes, I feel like I’m waiting to see how it all turns out before I put it to paper. But life is a process. Happy endings are constantly transitioning into confusions and misfortunes and misfortunes back into happy endings. So rather than wait around for some definitive point in this story, I’m just going to pick up right here in the middle.
Who knows how it all ends!