Before the Move Expat Life Paperwork

Temporary Heartbreak

Heartbroken Robot

Our setback

My heart sank to my stomach. I stared at the words on the paper, the devastation flowing over me as I began to understand. We planned for two years. We worked on the visa process for six months. Impatiently, we counted down the days until this letter arrived in the mail. So much energy was poured into this dream and it was shattered by a short, one page letter. Our visas were refused. They turned us down.

My husband and I sat there together at the kitchen table in silence. Ten minutes had passed before we were able to gather our thoughts.

“Okay,” I told him in the most confident voice I could manage. “This isn’t over. We still have time and there are ways to appeal.” We were pretty used to things falling apart. During our better times, we would even laugh about our luck, or lack thereof.

Where this all began

A year and a half ago, during a late-night talk, my husband Carlos and I were joking about getting away from where we lived. You know that warm, fuzzy feeling you get as the end credits begin to roll after a particularly inspiring movie? That feeling that makes you want to drastically change your life for the better? Well, we grabbed onto that feeling and refused to let go.

After the decision to move had been made, we wrote list after list; so many pros and cons that it would make my head spin. How do you choose? Finally, we narrowed it down to the Netherlands, Germany, and France. After a lot of back and forth, France won. That was that. We were moving across the world to France! I researched day and night for almost two years. I started this blog to document our adventures. Carlos worked fifty hour weeks, sometimes more so we could save up the money. His job even gave him the okay to work as a contractor from France. It was perfect. We counted down the days until we could finally apply for that visa. Everything seemed to be coming together.

Flash forward to that slap in the face from the French government.

Merci pour rien. Now to figure out our next step. We hired a hand holding service to help us out, but after spending the last of our money on a year subscription for that, we find out that our income really isn’t enough to be approved because we have three children to account for. Great. We’ll see where this leads us. Feeling broken hearted and so damn tired, we’re still taking steps forward, but we’re running out of options. We have never been ones to give up easily so we’re going to continue to fight, even with black eyes and bruises.

We still have one more thing to try, and I have confidence that it will work. It has to. We have help now, which makes me feel a whole lot better. This is the most important plan we’ve ever made. We just can’t stay here. I feel this pulling that I can’t just push aside. We need to get out and see the world. I want our kids to see the world. I’ll keep you updated on our progress. This will still happen.

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