Following my heart

This has been a tough decision. We really enjoy San Miguel de Allende and could stay here a few months longer at least, but when I think about staying here for a year or more, well, I don’t think I love it that much.

At first I asked myself if perhaps it was just my wanderlust kicking in, but when I considered taking trips or planning a visa run I just wasn’t into it (although a weekend trip wouldn’t go amiss). I’m enjoying having a home base. I wasn’t sure I’d last 2 months before needing to go somewhere, and I know many of my friends didn’t expect I’d last this long in one spot either, but I do dig this having a base thing.

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I’ve really wrestled with this decision, but I’m glad I took the extra time to decide whether we stay or go. When I first began talking to Tigger about the possibility of returning to Europe, I noticed his anxiety increase drastically. I decided that night we were staying.

The next day Tigger informed me that he was okay with going back to Europe for two reasons: (1) He didn’t want his life to be governed by his anxiety. (Not a convincing argument for Papa Bear, though.) and (2) “You deserve to be happy, too.”

I decided to let things go for a while just to make sure, and his anxiety did indeed return back to normal levels, even when we discussed moving. So, I let out an internal sigh of relief.

Still the decision was incredibly tough. I knew what I wanted, but for some reason I couldn’t bring myself to make the decision.

What really stood out for me, though, was one day when I was visiting with friends who we had originally met in Budapest. I made the comment that I was happy here. Followed by, “Well, I’m pretty happy here. I mean I think I am. . . “ Saying it out loud and realizing how I instantly felt was a strong indicator to me.

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After that, Tigger and I chatted and we decided we would make the decision to move to Budapest and live with that for a few days to see how we felt.

I continued to feel mostly peaceful. And within a week’s time I had made enough extra income to be able to buy the tickets.

Figuring that was a sign, I sat down at my computer and started searching airfares. I found a good fare and got all the way to the payment button before a sense of dread hit me.

“That’s interesting,” I thought.

Was it because of the questionable reviews of the airline I had found? Was it because I didn’t really want to leave? I decided to sit it out one day.


The next morning I got back on the computer and found an even better route that would end up costing us much less for the 2nd flight we’d need to arrive in Budapest. It wasn’t hard to hit the payment button this time. And so we’re set. We’ll head back to Europe in late March.

I’m glad to have the decision made. The uncertainty and going back and forth in my head was rough on me physically and emotionally. Tigger was especially over the debate. Although, the discussions were useful as it became more clear that it wasn’t necessarily San Miguel he was enamored with but that he just doesn’t want to move.

I get that and share that feeling.

Hopefully, we won’t have an issue with getting residency in Hungary, but we have some backup plans in case that happens. It would just be really nice to not have to tap into any of those.

So, Budapest, here we come! It feels like we’re going back home. And that’s a lovely feeling to have.

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  1. Hmmmm… I’m a little surprised by this, honestly. Isn’t it the parents’ job to do what’s in their child’s best interest?

    It seems clear Tigger took the role of parent here to make you happy, despite his reservations, desire to stop traveling as you’ve mentioned in previous posts, that he’s tired of moving and his anxiety attacks.

    It sounds like Tigger has a few years left before he’s legally an adult and can make his own decision. It seems like it would have been advantageous if he could have settled into a place he was comfortable with and enjoy it until then.

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    • Looks like you’re taking a wild jump there. We work together as a team and have done so with this decision as well. If he had strong feelings against the move, I would’ve responded differently. We are going to Budapest with the intent on living there. So he gets to stop traveling as he wishes, and I get what I need as well. Win-win.

      Furthermore, being in a place where both he AND his parent are happy and comfortable, directly preserves his best interests. Thanks for your concern, though.

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  2. I am biased because my family is Hungarian, so despite being an American my brother lived there two years and I have a passport, but Budapest is a wonderful, special place.

    Regarding Hungarian tolerance (or rather the lack thereof) that made you leave, this has made me really uncomfortable and sad with many of my relatives for years. (I have a few theories as to why this is, but a lot of it has to do with Hungarians being drama queens and a national identity shaped in many ways in recent decades by homogeneity.) I’ve heard a lot of *really* upsetting things, to put it mildly, where my objections get brushed off because I’m “a sensitive American.” But ultimately living abroad for some years has taught me you cannot unfortunately pick and choose your ideal country, and you can love people and places with flaws. Plus, frankly, if everyone gave up on Hungary and didn’t go there to speak up about what’s wrong it would *never* get better!

    Hope that helps. And good luck learning magyar. 😉

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    • Definitely agree. Every place has its thorns. You just have to decide if you can live with that particular set or not. Thankfully, I HAVE seen many Hungarians speak up and against the government’s handling of topics like immigration and the refugee crisis. I think the younger generation is going to effect a lot of change in their country. And hopefully with Budapest becoming more and more of an international city that will help a lot.

      Thanks for the good luck wish. I’m going to need it!

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  3. We do the same thing…letting ideas of where to go and where to live…just “sit” for a few days. It’s hard sometimes to balance it all out especially when you are a couple. However, things have a way of working themselves out, especially when you are listening to your heart. Pulling the trigger and buying the ticket is definitely the toughest moment for me. So I get my better half to do that part!

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  4. That’s a really big decision! And a tough one. It’s really good to hear that you and Tigger have such a tight connection and really listen to each other, not just words but hearts.

    I also decided I’d like to stay in Mexico for a while last July and found this job. But I am still looking for that solid base, especially now that I know what it feels like to have one.

    It’s such a strange feeling going from traveling place to place to suddenly having a base.

    I hope Budapest welcomes you two with open arms.

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    • It is really weird having a base at first. Feels weird to be completely unpacked as well. But it IS nice. It’s a tough decision, esp when you’ve been all over the world and have stayed in so many wonderful places.

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  5. Huge decisions and discussions!! You have to follow your heart and instincts. So looking forward to your next adventures back in Europe! Take care and hope the move goes well.

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  6. “You deserve to be happy, too.”


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    • Is Tigger still anti-school? It’s such a great way of building community, feeling at home, and building independence – even if it’s more of a HS coop than an actual school. We’ve been settled for over two years now, and it’s interesting that it took over a year for me to feel like I was coming home. It took Z much less long. Also – don’t stress yourself about where you settle, but do commit to a full year. It sounds like a long time, but it isn’t. It flies by.

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      • Yep. He almost considered checking out the expat school after becoming friends with some kids here, but he couldn’t move beyond that.

        We have to take baby steps. Or at least I do. It will also depend on the visa situation since the Schengen Zone doesn’t make it easy.

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  7. Good luck to you! Impressive that you give pause to all the tough decisions and let yourself sit in the feelings……meditating on what’s right. That’s hard to do sometimes. Excited to continue following your journeys.

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  8. Cheers to you! It’s quite a journey (emotional and physical) that you two are on and it’s a joy to share.

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  9. Happy for you! I hope the weeks ahead are pleasant and enjoyable as you get ready for the move!

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