I realize I’ve not posted in nearly a month now, but lucky for me, I have some very loyal readers who have been still checking daily. Thank you guys.
I originally planned not to post until after Christmas, because life has been so hectic here, however, I’ve found some free time, and I’d rather dedicate it to my lovely fans and readers here. 🙂
As many of you have read, I had to take an emergency trip back to France a lot sooner than expected. Arriving back at France was a whirlwind because a lot of time I speak English, making the 100% language transition was initially pretty strange for me, because, even when I speak to my parents, I use French 70% of the time and transition between the two in one sentence. NOT doing that in France was a bit strange.
I arrived in Paris pretty late and my parents met me. Went straight to the hospital to see my grandfather, who, despite being very sick and frail, was very elated to see me. I spent an hour or so with him and told him tales of New York. After an hour, I left and went home. I felt bad, because my grandparents came to the hospital here to be closer to family, but they’re not terribly close to their own home in the countryside. I think my grandparents felt uncomfortable. I know my grandfather had trouble sleeping.
Is it weird to say you had culture shock going into your own country? I felt like I did. NYC compared to Paris is like comparing croissants to bagels. They may, initially, look similar. They may have the same color and they may both have chocolate chips in the middle, but they’re definitely NOT the same.
The initial days in France were pretty nice, but we spent a lot of time with my grandfather. He kept apologizing for being so sick and making me come earlier. He knew he was dying, and he felt guilty for it. That made me cry a lot. I didn’t want him to feel bad or guilty… It’s really rare that my family actually calls me by my first name, because if you remember, everyone calls me Elsy (I actually don’t think some friends know my actual name.) But my grandfather would grab my arm and say my name, and say with such sincerity how sorry he was.
Dec 3rd, with all his family gathered around, my grandfather said goodbye and passed away.
These past few weeks have been difficult with sorted funeral arrangements, trying to talk to Obj. & dealing with the loss. After the funeral, I bought a plane ticket back to NYC so I could stay for a week or two. That didn’t turn out as planned either, as my grandmother has been having a hard time adjusting to life by herself. I decided to stay with her.
Now… Rewind. You MAY remember me telling you that my grandmother lives in the countryside. I’ve lived in the city all my life. Making the adjustment has been absolutely insane. At first I was unable to sleep. It was too quiet. Any noise that was there would make me jump. Honestly, I don’t know how some do it. I’ve ended up having to buy sound sleep apps on my iPad to drift off or I go into complete paranoia.
Also, the countryside is incredibly boring when you actually live here for more than 3 days. I’ve been keeping busy looking after my grandmother and helping her. (She loves my pancakes! :)!) However, if I actually want to go out and do something, it requires a lot of time and effort to go do it. I’ve been catching trains in and out of Paris none stop. It’s such a pain. I can’t just go out the door and grab a coffee, or a bite to eat… Again. NOT fun.
Objection and I have had to make a huge effort to find time for one another. With work, and the time difference, it’s a bit hard. I’m lucky that Objection has been so understanding and sensitive during this time though. He’s been kind enough to look after my dog Snapple and is actually coming to France in a couple of days to spend Christmas with my family.
Christmas will be hard with year without my grandfather, but I’m still happy I can spend it with my family and with Obj. this year. My grandmother is finally on her path to healing, and some days, she goes all day without crying. They’ve been together for so long that I’m not sure how she’ll manage on her own. I’m scared to go back to New York because I know how lonely she’ll be.. Although my mother and father will visit her and everything, I know she’s not used to being alone.