Thursday, June 3, 2010

Friend or...?

We told our families we were thinking about moving a while back and they all supported us. Of course, there were a few questions asked. At first, it was the normal Where, When, Why. The when and why were easy enough to figure out. The where took a bit longer.

When: at the end of the school year. There was no point taking Marie out of her environment for only a few weeks. It made sense to wait until she was finished school. It would also put a lot more pressure on us to move in at the week end and try to squeeze the whole moving thing between other commitments. The summer seemed to be the perfect time.

Why: The idea first came to us as a very practical: 'How can we save money?'. The first 'no effort really necessary' cut was toll charges. Mr Foodie passes through a toll bridge everyday, twice a day. If I go and meet him, I too pass through it. At the week end, if we decide to give Mr Foodie's parents a visit, we pass through it. So really we use the toll, everyday of the week, twice a day. After looking at a few places, we realized we could save on the rent too. Add to that a better quality of life in the countryside, more space, a safer environment (well I think) for the girls. And that's the why.

Where: we recently discovered as I blogged about yesterday.

So now the questions are becoming a bit more practical such as how far is this and that, what is the school like, how will access work for Marie etc. Once again, everybody was really supportive, offering their help and cars for the move. One of them also told us that we would be mad to pass this opportunity. We know it will take a bit of adjusting, there will be no more take aways (emm let me think more money saving and a healthier lifestyle, not such a bad thing after all), no more popping to the shop for this or that (and coming back with an extra packet of biscuits, more money saved.), more planning when it comes to food shopping. But I'm a country girl, my parents live in the countryside and I'm used to that. That's the way I grew up! Mr Foodie, I'm sure, will get used to that despite having grown up in the city.

So why this post, you might ask. We all know you're moving and you are delighted and you found a great spot. Why this post, stop rubbing our noses in it? (I'm not really, am I?). Well because we were a bit taken aback by one of our friends reactions. On Tuesday, we called our landlord, who is also a family friend. It does make it a bit harder to announce that you are moving out than a total stranger. But I think he understood that it was strictly business and nothing personal. So after telling him, we decided to call another close friend to let her know. It so happens that she is related to our landlord. And we were a bit shocked at her reaction. The first thing she said is: 'Are you mad?'. She then proceeded to go through every negative she could think off, such as the proximity of the hospital should Noelie have to go back ('as it has happened in the past' she made a point to mention), who would mind Marie for us in that case? Or babysitting if we want to go out, who would do it? What about Marie, she will have no friends in school? etc... The conversation went on for a few minutes, we felt that her tone was bitter, her attitude negative, her questions patronizing. Like we hadn't thought it through, like it was a spur of the moment thing, like we hadn't considered any of those questions. Like a mother scorching a child (is that the right word?). She did mention that she was 'only saying that as a friend' but it didn't feel that way. For me, and although I don't have many, a friend is there to support you, help you make the right decision for you in a constructive way, and respect you and your decisions (as long as these are reasonable of course). They are not supposed to put a dampener on things (apart from completely unrealistic ones) and above all, fail to see what good it could do us and our family and be happy for us.

We tried to understand why she had reacted like that. We can only guess that she was seeing the situation from her point of view and her relatives point of view only. Maybe she is 'jealous' that we are able to make such a decision, make the change for a better life and she can't for different reasons. Being a city girl living the 'Sex and the City' lifestyle (she could really take on Carrie Bradshaw any day!), maybe she can't understand the appeal of the countryside. Whatever her reasons are, we won't hold it against her. Hopefully, she will see that we have thought it through and that we are taking the decision that we think is best for our girls and ourselves at this point in time and eventually be happy for us. And hopefully, she will remain a good friend and this decision and the added miles won't affect our relationship too much.

Have you ever had a friend like that? Somebody who failed to see the good side of a decision you made and failed to be happy for you? Has that friendship survived?

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