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Sick of living here!

Sick of living here!

Old Aug 1st 2011, 1:25 pm
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Default Sick of living here!

Sorry to be a Debbie Downer, I think this is only my second post as well! I am not sure if I am homesick or if I just don't like Virginia. I have been here since the beginning of 2009 and I just want out.
I think my biggest problem is the weather. I hate it. Today the high will be 97F complete with lovely northern Virginian humidity. I have three small kids and I am pregnant again (I have a 2 and a half year old and 1 year old twins). It is just too hot to go outside with them. I am a stay at home mum, I can't drive and I just feel like I am stuck inside the house all the time. I miss fresh air and a cool breeze.
I feel so jealous when I go onto facebook and read about my British friends taking their kids to the park, or getting a bus somewhere.
I hate the fact that whenever one of the kids is feeling poorly I can't just take them to the doctors, I have to get my in-laws to help. Besides the transport problem it costs $40 per kid per kid.
We just moved in to this house back in February and it seems like one expensive problem after another - the siding had to be replaced, the oven had a gas leak, the roof is getting old, the ac/heating needs updating and so it goes on.
Sorry to ramble on
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Old Aug 1st 2011, 3:03 pm
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Default Re: Sick of living here!

Hey there. Sorry to hear you're not having the best of times here, and I just wanted to let you know you're not the only one who gets sick of living here from time to time.

I've had a lot of similar issues myself. I hate the heat here too, this year has been one of the worst in the 6 years I've been here for heat. I can't imagine what it must be like for you being pregnant in it, my wife was pregnant in winter and she had a fan on every night (which I quite enjoyed as I like the cold). The lack of public transport, facilities for walking around, stupidity of the healthcare system - they've all pissed me off at some point too.

Somehow, through frequent bouts of homesickness (I'm sort of in one now), I've managed to stick it out for 6 years. I'm sort of stuck here because I married an American who doesn't want to leave though so I sort of have to learn to live with it if I want to see my children . That doesn't mean I always have to like it though
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Old Aug 1st 2011, 3:16 pm
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Default Re: Sick of living here!

My heart goes out to you. I can't imagine what it is like to be stuck inside or outside with three children under the age of 3 and pregnant with number 4. I know that some parts of rural Virginia lack public transportation and that is not good for you since you apparently live in a more rural area of Virginia then same Reston, Herndon or Richmond.

If you just purchased your home, did you get an inspection before signing the paperwork? If so, you might be able to sue the inspector in small claims court to recoup the funds you had to outlay for repairs.

Have you driven before? If not, can your spouse or one of your in-laws teach you to drive and if so, can you afford a run about car for you and the kids?

This summer's early heat wave was hot and humid all over the US. Southern states are noted for their high humdity.

Hoping that you solve the locked inside issue and can find yourself outside under a leafy tree with the kids.
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Old Aug 1st 2011, 4:46 pm
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Default Re: Sick of living here!

Hi, sorry you are having a hard time right now, we lived in the South years ago and the humidity killed me! I know exactly how you feel as I had 2 small kids at the time and felt so isolated. Actually, it was so bad I told my husband I'm moving out West and if you want to you can come!...he did!

Definitely learn to drive!!! get your husband to go out with you, once you can drive you're going to feel a whole lot better believe me, won't make the humidity go away but you'll be mobile and be able to get out to different places, you can meet other mum's, have play dates etc, it all helps.

For now, if you don't already have one, get a kiddy pool, just one of those smaller ones you can get from Walmart, stick it in the back yard for the kids to have fun in especially in that weather, sit in the pool with them! that's what I did.

You have a lot going on, get going with the driving, do it for YOU.
I am in the UK right now and escaping all that heat, things will get better for you, hang in there
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Old Aug 1st 2011, 4:49 pm
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Default Re: Sick of living here!

Sorry to hear about your worries. I remember how miserable being pregnant during the heat was, so you have my sympathies.

Why are you unable to drive? How difficult would it be for you to try and learn? Getting out of the house and driving to a park with your little ones (or even an air-conditioned mall!) would cut you such a break.

Do you have any friends nearby yet? Can they come by and hang out? Or could you afford to get a babysitter sometimes and have a night out with your husband?

I'm so sorry it's hard right now. I hope things get better soon.
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Old Aug 1st 2011, 5:04 pm
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Default Re: Sick of living here!

Sorry you are having a hard time at the moment. Have you joined any mums clubs or anything? I know it will be difficult if you are not driving, but maybe there is somewhere near enough that you would be able to get to. I joined mom's club which is a non-religious group country wide. I found the details on line. I think this might link you to groups near you;
http://newcomersclub.com/va.html

In the Texas heat it has been nice to go to splashpads this summer. The kids wear themselves out and I stand in the sprays to cool off. We also go to the kids play areas at the malls.

babycenter.com may be able to help as well as there might be local stuff on the message boards.

Hope things get better soon.
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Old Aug 1st 2011, 7:19 pm
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Default Re: Sick of living here!

It's no fun feeling in the dumps, so good luck!

Though what's stopping you getting a license? It will massively improve your life over here, and give you a sense of identity!

What about the local town hall or library? They must have notice boards listing local groups, new to town type groups, kids groups, or other stuff like that.

meetup.com and facebook probably will be a good place to start, looking for family groups and anything to do with your hobbies.

If nothing else, you might find some baby sitting sharing type groups, where you babysit for "tokens" rather than cash and then someone will babysit for you if you need time out on your own. This works quite nicely so you don't feel bad about spending money if you just want some time alone to wonder around the mall or what have you. Also get to make friends with other local parents.
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Old Aug 1st 2011, 8:18 pm
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Default Re: Sick of living here!

Originally Posted by mogmaster View Post
Sorry to be a Debbie Downer, I think this is only my second post as well! I am not sure if I am homesick or if I just don't like Virginia. I have been here since the beginning of 2009 and I just want out. ........We just moved in to this house back in February and it seems like one expensive problem after another - the siding had to be replaced, the oven had a gas leak, the roof is getting old, the ac/heating needs updating and so it goes on.
Sorry to ramble on
We're down in Hampton Roads and its absolutely rancid here too. Mind, even the locals moan about the level of humidity when it hits the peak (like now).
Sometimes in the morning, I open the sliding door, stick one finger outside and then close it wondering what the %$#@ I can do to avoid "cabin fever" today...
Its not easy to do any gardening (which is a lovely pastime) when after 1min, you are pouring sweat and the bloody trees are buzzing from all the cicadas, the poor birds won't go near the bird-bath for fear of being boiled alive and the only human moving about outside looks like Larry the cable-guy stuck to a lawn tractor. Because he is Larry the effing cable-guy....

Honestly, you really need some wheels.
To get outside - if only so you can spend a few hours in the cool of a shopping mall, or a cinema, ice rink......anywhere cool. The yanks simply cannot exist without cars, so its bonkers to think that anyone new to this place could even begin to explore it and get to enjoy themselves without one.

Good luck.
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Old Aug 1st 2011, 10:41 pm
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Default Re: Sick of living here!

Do you have a PEPS group that you could join? I never joined one myself, but I've heard they are great, especially for moms-at-home. I would definitely encourage you to get your driving license too...I don't particularly enjoy driving, but it does give you the freedom. Good luck!
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Old Aug 1st 2011, 10:49 pm
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Default Re: Sick of living here!

Sorry it has taken me so long to respond, and thank-you for all the replies!

We don't live in a rural area (we actually would like too!) we live in Woodbridge (I hear it's known as Hoodbridge...) in a suburby area. There is a lot of things for kids to do and so on, but all the ones within walking distance are off limits due to the heat.

I had a permit to learn how to drive and while we were living with my in-laws I had a number of lessons with my DH. Unfortunately my permit expired before I could really have enough to sit a test and we are waiting for me to get a new greencard (my application for 'removal of conditions' is in process) before I can get a new one.

We do have a kiddy pool and a water table which we have made use of this summer! I still find it very hot, I guess because I am pregnant, the heat makes me feel sick and dizzy. We had to leave our sprayground early at the weekend because I just felt too bad to stay!

Fortunately my husband isn't a Virginia fan either and we both agree that if we stay in the US we will have to move to either New England (he grew up in upstate NY) or out West (in the NORTH!!!!). He isn't keen on Britain.

Oh,and as for the house - we bought this one partly because we couldn't rent (long story!) and there wasn't much else on the market. We knew about the roof only having a few more years on it, but the siding was technically fine it just looked old and after we moved in the HOA demanded we have to replaced. The company who did the job for us left a mess and we now have a leak coming through it, which we are trying to resolve with them.

I have looked for mum's clubs and one does meet within walking distance - but the closed for the summer!

Anyway, I guess I just have to ride out the summer and hope we are soon in a position to move! And that I can get driving soon...
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Old Aug 1st 2011, 11:28 pm
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Default Re: Sick of living here!

The only small glimmer of hope I can offer is that the end of August is usually more cool than the start. Hope you get your licence soon, one of the most common comments I hear from Brits is the amount of driving done in the USA compared to the UK.
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Old Aug 1st 2011, 11:52 pm
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Default Re: Sick of living here!

Originally Posted by mogmaster View Post

I had a permit to learn how to drive and while we were living with my in-laws I had a number of lessons with my DH. Unfortunately my permit expired before I could really have enough to sit a test and we are waiting for me to get a new greencard (my application for 'removal of conditions' is in process) before I can get a new one.
..
You do not have to wait for your new Green Card. When you filed for removal of conditions, you should have received a letter extending your permanent residency status for one year. This letter, together with your expired GC, is proof of your status as a Permanent Resident.

If the DMV bods give you grief, escalate it to a supervisor, and/or go to a different DMV office. If necessary contact DMV head office. Don't take no for an answer. You are still a Permanent Resident and thus entitled to a driver's license.
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Old Aug 2nd 2011, 12:52 am
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Default Re: Sick of living here!

Originally Posted by mogmaster View Post
Oh,and as for the house - we bought this one partly because we couldn't rent (long story!) and there wasn't much else on the market. We knew about the roof only having a few more years on it, but the siding was technically fine it just looked old and after we moved in the HOA demanded we have to replaced. The company who did the job for us left a mess and we now have a leak coming through it, which we are trying to resolve with them.
When I sold my townhouse about 5 years ago, my real estate agent told any potential buyers that the HOA was going to replace the siding in a few years and that estimates were already given to the HOA and the maximum assessment to each homeowner was told to the potential buyer. They also got all documents during closing from the HOA that described any problems.

In California if that was not done, the real estate agent as well as the seller opens himself/herself up for lawsuits.
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Old Aug 2nd 2011, 7:13 pm
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Default Re: Sick of living here!

Glad you have found a moms club for when it opens again. Do your local libraries have a free story/singing time?
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Old Aug 2nd 2011, 7:32 pm
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Default Re: Sick of living here!

Sorry you're having a bad time. Summers in the US suck. I'm in the desert southwest and I can hardly take it. I can't walk to the park for my lunch, I can't go for walks until after 9pm or before 6am, and there's no river or lake to hang out by and feed the ducks. It's been like this since May and I've got two more months to go.

The US is definitely a very different place, and probably the best thing you can do is accept that it's entirely different. Once I stopped looking for similarities between home and the US, I started accepting it for what it is and noticing all the nice things about where I live. Being a stay-at-home mum is lonely at the best of times, and I think being in the US you probably feel even more cut off. By looking at what your UK friends are doing on Facebook, you're only making it worse for yourself. It sounds as if you've found a club to join, which is great. My stay-at-home mum friends here have a hard time, and they grew up here and have family round the corner!

I know the summers are horrible, but just think about autumn being around the corner. It's what keeps me going this time of year.
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