J. Shanelle Speaks
Truth, Wisdom, Knowledge
Interested in living abroad? Let me share my story.
While living in St. Louis Missouri, due to all the injustices there and throughout the United States, I looked my husband square in the face and I told him that he had one year to get us (myself & our two sons) out of there. He replied "okay, tell me where you want to go". Then it dawned on me, if you've lived in one place in the states (with the exception of a few minor cultural differences and weather changes) you've pretty much lived in them all.
One day while watching HGTV International television I saw a young couple house hunting abroad.... and then it hit me; I wanted to live abroad. This idea wasn't as farfetched as it may seem, as my husband and I had always planned to move abroad when we retired, so when this thought came about, I figured, why wait?
I called my husband into the room to tell him my thoughts about moving abroad. At the conclusion of our conversation he stood in the doorway and stared at me with a puzzled look, then surprisingly said "let's do it". From there we researched potential places that were better suited for our family. My husband then came across Costa Rica, I found a city, and within nine months my husband quit his long term corporate position and we were gone.
Moving abroad was one of the best decisions that I've ever made. With the division and injustices going on in the states, I wanted to give our two young sons a chance to live differently, to instill in them the right to exercise their options and to not just accept the life that surrounds. I work very hard to show my sons a different way to view life, so that in the end, they can truly understand what it means to be free and to have control over their life.
Prior to the decision to move abroad my husband and I did DNA ancestry kits. To our surprise, both of our DNA kits revealed that we were less than 1% American... Less than 1%!!!! Both of us!!! Which essentially means that the essence of who we are wasn't embedded in the country we were currently in. I had more roots in Ireland than I did in the country I was born.
Learning this -- along with our desire to give our sons a better life -- we packed our bags, sold our belongings and made Costa Rica our new home.
Come along with me as I share our roller-coaster of an adventure of moving abroad!
From passports, to spiders, to scorpions and hot dog sized worms (not really, but they are huge). From giant ants with wings, to language barriers, to culture shock (yes, this is very real) and to learning why you should never ever greet a Costa Rican by saying "que - pasa". To being reintroduced to walking, as walking is a way of life here (no getting around this, but you'll lose a ton of weight by doing it). From exploring different foods, to learning to live life at a slower pace and then literally asking yourself "what am I rushing for?"
I never realized how much I rushed through my day until I moved here. Everything slows down and it's an amazing feeling to not be imprisoned by the illusion of time. Pura Vida, is a common saying in the Costa Rican culture. If you live here long enough, you'll find yourself embodying the Pura Vida life too. "Pure Life".
From having mango, oranges, grapefruit, lemons and berries growing on trees in our own backyard, and to awakening every morning to breathtaking views. From mountains that surpass the clouds, to a sense of peace that my soul has forever longed for. To adapting to new ways of life, and to finally finding our way...
This is my life abroad:
If you're thinking of moving abroad, specifically to Costa Rica, I invite you to journey back to this page periodically as I outline in detail our experiences in transitioning abroad.