Saturday, October 17, 2009

Reality Sinks in Slowly

...or in my case, hits me like a ton of bricks.  -at approximately 95.7 mph.  -with pointy, rusted, metal spikes in them.

Today I decided to log into my online account and check how much the phone bill will be after nearly three weeks of phone calls from Germany.  It wasn't pretty.  In fact, it was a whopping $350 of not-prettiness.  It's safe to say I'm completely panicking a little worried. 

I mean, I knew it would be expensive.  I expected quite a large sum...just not that much.  At the moment I have no earthly idea where I'm going to get that much money.  Kyle is already sending me the $360 for apartment rent every month.  I really don't want to ask him to cover this too. 

When I get back to my hometown tonight (which I travel to every weekend for laundry/visiting purposes) I'm going to sit down with a pencil and a sheet of paper and devise some strange mathematical formula that will make my finances work out.  And then I'll be making a few calls to discover which international phone plan will be the cheapest for the next 8 months or so.  Any reccomendations?  I'll fix this, but right now, I'm in the midst of a melt-down, and it isn't all about this bill.  (Though the bill alone is enough to make me want to strangle the life out of those heartless, leeching phone companies...)


The real problem is the one that's sinking in slow, spreading a chill through through my happiness.  For the first time in all these months, I'm beginning to feel afraid.  Up until this point I haven't really considered how much I'm giving up by leaving next summer.  The only thing I have been concerned with is getting to Kyle, no matter the cost. 

...but I'm going to miss so many people here.  My best friends are here.  My family is here.  This drab little Kentucky town has been my home for just over nineteen years, and even though I've always wanted to go and explore, I am having some difficultly imagining a life outside of it. 

What will I do without everyone? 

Kylie:  My very best friend since elementary school.  The person who's always been by my side, even in the darkest of moments.  The girl who spent hours educating me in music.  The girl that reads all the beginnings to my many, horrid attempts at a novel.  The only person that shares all of my inside jokes, understands my slightly-off sense of humor, and can put up with me when I'm in hyper-goofy mode.  The one friend I'll always trust, no matter what, and the one I don't think I'll ever lose.  What am I to do when I don't have her with me anymore?

Not to mention Jon, Brianne, Chrissy, Sean...  These people are the ones I chose to surround myself with.  They're my hand-picked family. 

Courtney:  It's hardly fair for me to gain a new sister only to have to leave.  Who will continue my movie education when I'm gone, huh?  (Apparently I lived under a rock for the first 17 years or so of my life.  Courtney's been using the time that Kyle's away to bring me up to date.)  And if a Team Edward v. Team Jacob war breaks out, who will be on my side?  We Team Jacob girls are few and far between.  Who's going to help me eat all of the snickerdoodles?  Who else is enough like me to understand my crazy thought processes?  You aren't going to be missed at all, actually.  I'm going to pack you in my suitcase.

And my real family...  They're a crazy bunch, but I love them to pieces.   Even though I've been living away from home for more than a year now, I haven't really had a chance to miss them.  I'm home practically every weekend to borrow a washer and dryer, and they phone me at least twenty times a day.  Leaving next summer will be the first time we've ever really been apart.  While I have always wanted an adventure, I've also always cherished the security that being so close to home provides.  How will I adapt to being so far away?

I'm especially dreading leaving my baby brother.  He's not such a baby anymore.  At ten years old it seems like he grew up overnight.  How much of his childhood will I miss when I'm gone, and will he be able to forgive me for it?

Being without Kyle requires one kind of strength, but losing my family and friends requires another entirely.  Will I be able to find this strength when I need it?  I've been taking care of myself for quite some while, but it's been with the support and encouragement of a huge number of people.  It makes me wonder how on earth he's coping with being entirely alone now.

Don't misunderstand, I'm not changing my mind about leaving.  Being with Kyle, starting our life together, is my top priority.  Everything else falls to the wayside when neccessary.  Though it will hurt to leave everything that is familiar, that pain will be nothing compared to that of being without my other half. 

It's just that I'm realizing that my heart isn't entirely devoted to Kyle, though he certainly has the majority.  Other portions will be left behind to ache until we're home again.  To make matters worse, I can't even predict how far away that day is set.

I guess I can chalk this up as another life lesson:  Every bit of happiness has its price.


  1. I know exactly how you feel. I was just as scared when I moved to CO (and sadly, I didn't have a fiance to go to), but it's been such a great experience. I was afraid of drifting from the ones I love, but our relationships are just as strong. Sure I can't see them as often as I like but they are just a Skype/phone call away and I know they love me. Plus, I'm making all kinds of new friends that I now can't imagine not having in my life. Like you leaving your bro, I was especially worried about leaving the 2 kids I nannied for. They're so little - I'm going to miss them growing up and doing new things for the first time. And worse, what if they forgot me? But so far, they haven't and I get to talk to them a lot, so I'm not nearly as worried anymore.

    I won't lie - sometimes it is lonely, but for the most part, I made the right decision, and I know you are too. Be strong!

  2. Skype saved my life when I was in Canada this last year. If he has a landline it will cost you $6/month to call unlimited to Germany. If he has a cell with a U.S. number it's $3/month... and, if he has skype too, it's totally free!

  3. Well hey, I'll be team Jacob with you. I'm not in love with the books, but I always liked Jacob more :)

  4. By the way- two of my older brothers moved out when I was 13. The last moved out when I was 15. He'll forgive you. In fact, it's never even crossed my mind to be angry at my brothers for missing so much of my life. We still talk a lot, and I still love them to death. They're all my heroes.
    So trust me, your brother will love you regardless. Don't worry about that part.

  5. aww Carrie :(
    I know this is lighthearted compared to all that you'll have to deal with - but there are Team Jacob fans out there! (myself included!) You just have to look at them :)
    To me I've learned that distance is a state of mind. If you take the time to take care of the relationship you have with someone, it's like they're right there with you.. not however many miles away... (as you already know with Kyle..)
    Keep your head up girl! Enjoy the time you have with them now and don't say goodbye! Only see you later :)


  6. kelleidoscope--Me too. So far I like the movie(s) better than the book(s) and I am totally Team Jacob! :)

    Carrie: I moved from my tiny town I grew up in to Orlando after college, completely on my own. It was scary. But you'll find people you have things in common with in Germany, just like I did in Orlando. You will have great experiences. And the people who love and care about you will stay in touch. All my best friends did and yours will too.

  7. i agree - skype's the best. and i have to say, though i don't know you personally (but speaking as someone who has been in a long-distance relationship and moved across the country & across the world many times), you will be FINE. taking a risk and adventuring and following your heart & gut is always better than staying in what's secure. and you won't be losing or leaving behind pieces of your heart - contrary to what fear has us believe, your heart will grow & be capable of so much more love as you grow as a person & experience new things. you have every right to be scared, but don't let it overwhelm you - enjoy this wonderful adventure!! :)

  8. you will always find your way back home. :) youll be ok, sweetheart.

  9. DOWNLOAD SKYPE!! It'll be your lifesaver! I see someone above already gave you prices... pay off that phone bill and never again!

    If I could pick up the phone and call you right now I would. My heart totally went out to you on this one. You read my posts for the past couple months... I was going through the same thing. I was SO incredibly scared to move a mere 1100 miles away to go and be with my husband, that I contemplated not even going. Seriously... I love him to pieces and I thought about a long-distance marriage when it wasn't even necessary. It was the hardest thing I've ever had to do to get in that car and drive. But I did it. And I'm sooooooooooo happy (yes, that happy). And you will be too. It'll be hard at times.. but not as hard as you're thinking it'll be. You'll miss out on a few things with your family and friends... but the ones that matter most will keep in touch and make you feel like you were there with them, not missing a beat. This will honestly get worse before it gets better, but I promise you it will all work out. Keep your head up and think about starting your life with that handsome man of yours :)

  10. don't worry- like a few others have said, download skype... and then be assured that even if he doesn't have his skype on, you can call his cell phone for only 2 cents a minute!!! it's a lifesaver, believe me. i'm in japan right now and couldn't live without it! happy skyping!!!

  11. Carrie, I actually feel better now hearing you express the feelings that you have. If you didn't have those feelings of loss and dread about leaving your loved ones, it would mean you weren't being realistic about your decision. It's a good sign that you are facing the reality of your situation ... that way you can prepare.

    I left home when I was 18 - 6 hours away from my home town - to go to school in Canada's largest city (and my town was 16,000 people). I ended up staying here after I got married and had children. I was homesick (just a little) every day of my life until my parents moved down here too. (That was almost 20 years later). In short - I was missing somebody, all of the time! : )

    It's OK to be afraid - I would worry about you if you weren't!

  12. I went through this two years ago. I moved from Az to a city in CA I'd never even been to before. At first I was happy me and my love were living together but then I felt so vulnerable and alone because I didn't know the city or anymone in it. And the thought of my closest friends and family being 900 miles away from me was something I found hard to cope with. But you really do grow from it and become a stronger person. You learn how to take care of yourself in ways you never thought you could. It will be a difficult transition but a rewarding one at the same time.

    As far as your little brother goes, I understand its hard but let him know you think of him by sending him cards. My little cousins love that : )

    For now just live it up with them : )

  13. Um, hello? You'll be one hour from France? I'm not sure which emotion weighs more: jealousy or sadness. Everyone here in our quite familiar place loves you and will be waiting with open arms when you return. We all know you love us for sure, too. No worries. If Kyle wasn't stationed in the army and you two lived right here together, that would be it. You'd most likely never get to do something completely on your own, especially something this amazing. This a HUGE step. A once in a life time opportunity. You can visit a place, but it's nothing like living there. Think of all the wonderful new story elements you're going to have. And the culture! My gosh, the culture!

    *puts away soap box* I'm sure, since we are so much alike, you've already thought of these things. But I say them anyway at a heightened tone to drone out the other things I would be thinking if I were you, too.

    I love you to death, Missy. I'm so glad that you are a part of my family now, both by choice and marriage (soon, anyway). I will miss seeing movies with you, especially at the theater. I've never been able to count on someone else being teared up at the exact parts that get me. :(

    But, think of the money you'll save! I'll probably own all the good ones by the time you get back anyway! We can just watch them at my house. :)

    Another thing, it's not like you're Kyle. You don't forget to call. You won't be hiding in broom closets for fear of 50 push-ups if you're caught. And, I'm guessing your phone, or at least your computer, will usually be charged. Keep blogging, emailing, writing, and calling (on occasion, we're broke you know!). The time will fly. You'll enjoy yourself. No one will hold it against you.

    Now, something completely serious. Who the hell am I going to go watch Eclipse with?! You are going to have to fly back home for that one. That's just it. :( I really don't want to get my ass kicked all alone by a bunch of 5th grade Edward Cullen Girlfriend Wannabees. Please don't let the Twitards get me Carrie, pleeeaassseee! Plus, that'll be around my birthday! You're $750 ticket could double as a Birthday/Christmas present... for the next 10 years. :)

    Okay, I've written a book. All I really want to say is: We know. It's okay. We love you. Take care of my brother. Have a great time.



  14. Skype is definitely the way to go! Either free for computer to computer, or about a dollar to talk an hour from computer to a landline. Not much help for cellphones though.

    Good luck!

  15. P.S. I'm feeling tons better and I'm sure I'm not contagious any more. Let's get back to that fun calendar, but now it's a "Spend as much time with Carrie before she's gone" calendar. :)

  16. Skype Skype Skype
    I love it and use it very often.
    Skype is amazing!

  17. Hey Carrie,
    I can completely empathize with the large cell phone bill. The first time my bill was less than $400 I was ecstatic. Now I can keep it comfortably around $200 without too much sacrifice. However, in order to keep it that low I have to use calling cards. I think Skype is the best way to go, but my fiance doesn't have access to a computer and Skype to Honduras is more than my cell phone. I bought the international plan for AT&T and it costs like $5 a month. With that calls are about $.50 a minute - Skype to Honduras was $.55. However, I can buy calling cards from (you just buy them online and you can set up speed dial and the pin number to your phone so you don't have to dial it every time). Now I pay like $.20 a minute. My $200 phone bill is usually a result of international text messaging. Good luck with that phone stuff - it totally creeps up on you!

    As for leaving everyone behind, I've had that problem numerous times. As a kid I moved every 3-4 years with the military and I moved from Maryland to Atlanta for grad school and then to Honduras for two years with the Peace Corps. Peace Corps was the hardest because I was all alone in a town of 1700 people and I didn't speak Spanish and no one spoke English. It was super hard at first and I missed my family, friends, routines, and actually anyone from the US. However, every time I've left I've made such great friends and had such great experiences that I wouldn't change it for the world. Moving to Germany will definitely be hard, however you'll have the support of other military families and Kyle and your friends and family from here (who can visit). You'll adjust in no time and then you'll be in the same situation when you have to leave there.

  18. Seriously! Skype will be huge xoxo


  19. I know about the long distance phone calls.. but I still live with my parents and they have free long distance (bell, I think?)

    I love Jacob too, by the way!

  20. My special someone and I have been living long distance for almost our entire relationship and I totally relate to opening a phone bill and seeing how ridiculous it is.

    You may want to invest in just getting a phone card for over-seas calls rather than getting a phone plan for it, especially if you are going to be moving in the future. Sometimes you can get really great deals on those cards! I'm up in Canada though so I am not exactly sure which cards to suggest, but I'd shop around a bit.

    I also relate to moving away for someone you love. I did the same thing. Not out of the country, but definitely 4000km across it. But that's what things like facebook and phones and email is for! You can keep in touch with everyone and also make new friends as well.

  21. Love always seems to come with complications. The prospect of moving so far away from family and friends must be daunting, but I know it will be worth it to be with the man you love. I'll be going through the same thing when I get married, although on a smaller scale. I'm moving 300 miles away from home but remain in the same country. At least the internet makes it easier to keep in touch with people, and your loved ones will have an excuse to visit Germany once they have you settled over there.

    Good luck to you. You're so brave! I know you're nervous, but once you settle into your new life I'm sure it'll be amazing, and you'll really grow from the experience, and the challenges on the way! I'll be rooting for you!

  22. I nominated you for a blog award. Come to my blog to pick it up.

  23. Skype is definitely the way to go. My distant ed teachers even use it and hooking up the webcam allows for free communication and a face to go along with it.

    I wish I knew what to tell you, but I don't. Change is never easy and I feel for you having to leave all of your dear ones. I couldn't imagine and luckily have never had to. Good luck to you and you'll be in my thoughts.

  24. This comment has been removed by the author.

  25. Missing friends and family is perfectly natural, and perhaps by going for a season (however long that might be) without them you will grow to love them even more and in a more deeper way that you would have been able to before. It wounds like there is little solace in this idea until you get to be back with your loved ones, so here's to having something to look forward to rather than something to dread.

    Also, I am glad to know there are more members of Team Jacob out there!

  26. You know what I used to do? I used to literally "FILE" my money in a little coupon book. I had categories like food, light bill, phone, etc. I would put money in each slot and that WAS SACRED and absolutely all the money I had to spend on each thing. It really worked out great because it helped me to visually see what I had to eat with for the week and if I had any left on "entertainment" to catch a movie with friends. You can also then movie cash around to other slots should you need it... it really is a great way to get your finances going:))))

  27. i know how you feel, and i feel so sad for you :(
    there are, i think, some really cheap dialling codes to germany, and also, there is skype and icq and everything, which are saving my life and love at the moment.
    hope you're feeling better by now, be strong, and greetings from germany

  28. you have such a cute blog here :)

  29. If Skype doesn't work out for you, I've heard rumors that GetPin is also great for international calling, but I have no idea what all the details are.

    don't worry, your family will always be there for you to come home to. look ahead to the bright future!

  30. I haven't read all 30 of the previous replies, but if you don't have Skype already, stop reading this and get it NOW! My husband and I are from about the same part of the country as you (I from Cincinnati, OH and J from NKY) and he is also in the Army. Skype will become your new bff as you embrace the life of being a military spouse! Not only will you be separated from your fiance and loved ones, but also the new friends you make as the Army sends each of you in different directions every 3 years or so. Good luck to you on your journey!

  31. I can't believe how many comments I accumulated over the weekend! Lol. :)

    First off, I will certainly be checking out Skype since so many of you have had good experiences with it.

    Second, thanks so much everyone for the support. :) I knew I was doing the right thing...but sometimes it's nice to hear someone else say it too.

    And Courtney, yes, I will be flying back over for the midnight premier of Eclipse...and for Breaking Dawn. :D Just make sure you reserve me a seat for both. ;)

    Oh, and to all of you who commented about being Team Jacob... HELL YEAH! Team Jacob girls unite! ;)

  32. This really hit home!

    I second Skype. It's pretty good (quality of connection usually isn't great, but it's a good compliment to phone calls).

  33. You sure know how to be optimistically heart-rending. What a read this post was. I could immediately sympathize with your plight and feel the pain of both separations (the kind you're experiencing now, and the kind you will experience).

    Some kinds of happiness do have their price...but you could look at it the other way, too. You're trading the happiness you have with your family and friends now with the happiness of going off to a foreign land and being with the love of your life. You're just switching happinesses (?) for a bit.

    Okay, I'm going to slip into man-mode here and help you solve your problems. First of all: have you tried international calling cards? I used those to call home when I was in Korea; they saved me a fortune on long-distance bills. I'm not sure how it works in Germany, but I'm sure Kyle could pick up a international phone card in a store somewhere and use it to call you. You could also buy one here and use it to call Europe. You can get 'em online. Six cents a minute was what my grandparents' German friend Gudrun was paying to call her friends in Germany. ( That's not too expensive.

    And as for adjusting to being without your family and being in a foreign place...just make sure you have a comfortable space to crash at the end of the day, with familiar things about you (your favorite pillows, maybe, or pictures of your folks to hang on the walls). Do that, and keep an open mind, and I think after a few weeks of getting to know the area and meeting new people (and being with Kyle) you'll begin to have a two-year BLAST. Germany's right in the heart of Europe; I don't know how much leave Kyle will get but I'm sure you two will be able to do some traveling together. Germany's a great country too, I hear, pretty as all get-out. I think if you approach this in the right frame of mind, stay strong, and make yourselves a comfortable nest, this is going to be the time of your life. (That's what happened to me when I went to Korea; I was stark raving homesick for the first couple of weeks. I was getting choked up on the phone home to Mom, if you can believe that of a 21-year-old. But then I settled in, made my apartment comfortable, got some of the necessities about me like Internet, phone service, comfortable bedding, etc...and then it turned into a ball. I was living it up over there. I met some good friends, we traveled all over the country together, I experienced the culture and the food, and man, it just felt like a second home. The same thing can happen to you if you let it. Keep your chin up, Carrie. That's all you have to do.

  34. Postman: "Optimistically heart-rending"... I like that. ;)

    Thanks for the advice and support. I think more than anything I was just shocked to discover how much I'm going to miss home. I hadn't really given that too much thought before.

    I did find a solution to the phone problem, which will be elaborated upon in a post that's coming soon. :)


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