Saturday, January 11, 2014

We Took the Risk

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One evening about two years ago my husband Jerry and I were sitting at the kitchen table talking our day through. We wanted to replace the dishwasher. The car needed an oil change. We discussed serving strongly-vegetarian meals.  We talked about the new tile in the bathroom. We planned visits to the grandmas. Homeschool lessons were going well. His boss had asked if our family might be interested in moving to Australia for a year...

Hey, wait now what!  Australia?!
We laughed, thinking that that was just a crazy idea.

The next day, after ten hours of internet surfing, I said to Jerry, Honey, what would you think of moving to Australia for a year?

Jer and I are both Midwesterners, born and bred. We are pretty average. We own a mini van.  Our ice maker is broken on the fridge.  We have crayon on our couches. We have a little cash in the bank.  We usually go camping for the big vacations. We've collected fire flies in a jar. We call it soda. We give cookies to the mailman at Christmas. We have seeded the lawn each year. We had just had our carpets cleaned. We wear Crocs.

I wouldn't call us risk takers but we started entertaining that crazy idea.

Two years later, as we contemplate our return home to St. Louis, I am thrilled that we took the chance.  Not everything has been perfect, not everything has been enjoyable. But our world view has expanded SO dramatically.  Each of us in our family, as we talktalktalktalktalk about our time here, is aware of the hugely transforming experience that this had been.

Not everyone gets opportunities such as this, but think of those small, daily chances that you do not take. Talk to a stranger. Try a new food. Write letters to loved ones. Read a book outside of your genre'. Take a new route. Color your hair. Listen well. Say those important words. Give a little too much. Read things that challenge your mind. Participate in your community. Dance to loud music. Write poetry. Look a fool. Laugh out loud. Be fully present. Look at the stars. Tell the people you love them. Learn something new. Wear the purple.

Take the risk.

If you enjoyed this post you might also read:  
Aussie Bound
Or you might enjoy:  Tape on the Wall


  1. oh I envy you and your adventure to Australia - I would so love the opportunity to go anywhere other than here :)

  2. Always take the risk to explore. Life is too short not to.

    1. You know, Rayven, I hope that Jer and I keep saying "YES" to opportunities!

  3. Kudos to you for taking the risk to move all around the world. I am a risk-taker, sometimes, when it just feels right. That's why I plunged into a shotgun marriage with a guy I knew for less than 5 months and followed him to the U.S. less than 3 months into our marriage. Four years later, after 2 kids, he followed me back to Germany, where we are now, 7,5 years in, happy as could be. I don't know how many people laughed at us back then, betting how long it would last. Besides that, I'm not one to take risks, I get scared in fast fair rides or when I have to stand on a chair :-) Have a great weekend, Karen!

  4. You. Guys. Are. Amazing!
    There's a quote that basically says the only things in life that we truly regret are the risks we didn't take. I don't know if I *totally* agree with that (I think there are other things people can truly regret, too), but I know that when life presents us with new opportunities, it greatly behooves us to act. That's a big part of how we learn some truly important lessons, and grow and deepen as individuals and as families and friends. This is something that will bind your family forever, and which those beautiful children of yours will always carry in their hearts. <3

    1. I think of the many Many MANY things that the kids have complained about while here, but I know that this time here will be a tremendously wonderful memory for them.


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