I can't believe it. In three short months I will be on Texas soil. My family and I have been living in Moscow for nearly two years now. We've learned to survive without much Russian language and I personally feel like I've even thrived a little. The personal confidence I've gained is enormous.
I am able to go and do what I need to. Im also able to do what I want to here with only the incredible traffic holding me back. Yes, it's hard living somewhere where you are the minority. It's hard not understanding when someone is trying to explain certain aspects of "this" or "that" to me, but I get by. Getting by has given me the confidence to know I can "go" and "be" and "do" anything.
It. Feels. Good.
I've made friends along the way as well. Many here at the U.S. Embassy, some out in the crazy world of Moscow. I've even made a few Russian friends... Russian friends who speak English of course.
Most notably is my dear, lovely friend Michelle. She's a well known chef here in the Embassy and out in Moscow. I've met her friends... her lovely chef friends and her artist friends. Wonderful people who, without knowing, have changed my perspective. I thank them for it. Mostly I thank her for allowing me to be included in her life outside the walls of our little American oasis.
I've met another Michelle, a Janice, and a Sarah or two that make me smile. Deep happy, joyful smiles. Smiles that are contagious and spread to your arms, knees and feet. Smiles that make a day, a week, or even a month (despite 3 feet of snow) even better. I thank them for that too. There are many others in my day to day life that bring me joy, but the point is that even if you don't realize it, you touch people. And touching someone whether it be actual physical contact, or the very important psychological touch, is essential for happiness.
I've found happiness here with my sweet family of 5. I've found happiness with friends, acquaintances, doctors and U.S. Marines who care. I've even found happiness riding the dirty Moscow Metro. I'm sad that I will be leaving all of this so soon, but I'm so very excited about the prospect of meeting and becoming friends, and surrogate families, with a whole new group of people at our next post.
I think this suits me right now. I think I've found a niche.
We've got three months, Russia. Lets make the best of it.