Sunday, May 15, 2016

A different month

Stella and I have been here for 2 months, and it has been a roller coaster of emotions! I knew this move would be different from any other move we have done (30 moves, countless states..) Jake and I have dealt with some stuff, but it has really made us grow closer together. Honestly this has been the best move for our marriage getting away from everything we are used to, and having to rely on God, and each other. We have handled this transition very differently. Jake goes to the field daily, has 3 americans on the team, translators, friends, and a routine. I am home with Stella all day, hard to find things to do, no one speaks english, and a 14 hour time difference from everyone back home. Jake has had tough days at the field baseball related, and i've had more bad days this month than good..I knew this would be a huge transition we aren't just visiting. We are residents, and that kicked in around week 5 how lonely it would be for me. Jake has been so amazing knowing the challenges since he was here 2 months before me, and I am so grateful for him to be sensitive to my feelings as I have been facing some personal struggles. The international office and team I can't praise them enough. They have done everything to make this as comfortable for us, and I know I bother them a lot with dumb questions, but they have become friends.

Saying that above. I hate to sound so negative, but its reality, and this past month has been so hard. Today, I'm in a better place mentally. I take each day, and have grown closer in my relationship with God than ever before. I NEED Him more than ever, and have really been trying to face my fears and I KNOW we are here for a reason! I know more than just baseball. I'm not sure if its to grow our family, to witness to people, or just help, but Jake and I both believe Japan is going to be a big part of our lives for the good. I can't tell you how much we love the people here. They make me want to be a better person. The fans are so respectful and I know i've talked a lot about this in previous post, but even though I can't understand them I love them..My friends back home especially Elizabeth, Lindsey, and a few others have been amazing! They stay up late even with work early the next day just to talk to me so I can have interaction, or text me things they know will make me laugh about our favorite reality shows. Liz sends me our sunday school small group message on video every week, and never forgets. I am truly grateful for our family and friends who have continued to be a huge part of our life! In this last month Stella has struggled. She constantly was saying I want to go home (she knows) and she misses her grandparents, cousins. It killed us. I questioned if I was doing the right thing, but I know keeping our family as one is what is important. Stella has grown so close to Jake, and I know she need her dad just as much as he needs us here. It has been better with her and I have my walls so tacky (taped) with pictures of our family, and friends. It has helped!

Backtracking to a few events these past 6 weeks for us. 4-20-16 we had our first earthquake and it was a pretty big one. Luckily Jake and I were together and happened right after we put stella down for bed. We heard something fall in the kitchen, and our place started to shake. Mind you...we are on the 13th floor (lucky us) Our building was swaying.... like in a baby swing swaying.. I saw my life flash before me. It was a 5.8 and 60 miles away, it lasted for about a minute. I learned after it is normal for our building to sway to be able to handle the earthquakes- that still doesn't give me peace.  Since then we have had 2 small ones (we slept through one.) It has kept me up a night, I still am having big issue with this, and finding comfort. I constantly have to pray multiple times a day for peace with this.
Only negative about local trains packed!! 

5-1 we found a church! It was very scary walking in not knowing if we would like it, or lined up with our beliefs since Christianity is less than 1% here..It is a Japanese pastor (our age) being translated by an Australian girl (mind blown!) About 30 people and from all over the world! I sat there listening to familiar songs sang in part english then Japanese, and was holding back the tears.. I was just so happy we found a church, and needed it badly at this point. Jake and I both did! This has always been an issue for us, and not proud to say we never went to church in the season. I wouldn't trust the nursery for Stella, or want to go alone. Here...  I need it, and went alone last week and survived. I was nervous about Stella and how she would do in her class away from me since its been me and her all day every day, but she loved it! She kept asking to go back. She pooped and they don't change her (fine by me) so I saw a changing table in the bathroom, and went in. All of a sudden a man walks in .. I thought am I in target?? jk... too early for jokes?? haha He looked as shocked as me and realized I was in the mens bathroom! ps.. he did start to pee ahhh!!

That same week Jake was moved back to the big leagues after being sent down after his first start. He pitched decent in his next start, and then moved to the bullpen since our bp is struggling. I really hope they can keep him there and for him to find his role and get comfortable vs moving back and forth like the Braves. He has had some good games, and some bad ones. He has learned so much and baseball if different here. This means his schedule changes and is now at all the games, travels with the team, and like a normal baseball routine. Hey it was good all the family time while it lasted! Jake has learned so much Japanese!! It's amazing how well he is doing with it. Stella has picked it up good too.. Me on the other hand not so much... its tough!! I got to travel with Jake this past week to Chiba and was very refreshing! We go to go to disneyland Tokyo, and had a blast!! I thought would be more foreigners there, but we still stuck out and people constantly looking at us and our every move. Chiba was very beautiful, and had outback steakhouse. we ate there both nights, and got to get together with another american couple who plays there. I had to travel back yesterday because Jake goes on a 10 day road trip.... this will by far be the hardest one. I stupidly brought a huge suitcase, stroller, backpack, and stella. I had to take a local train, then get off in TOKYO make sure I didn't miss my stop and go walk across the station to buy a bullet train ticket, then find the train and be on that for 1.5 hours with lots of help on the phone and texting with interpreters. I was sweating when I got to my seat. In the future I need to learn the best way to do that because I probably had to walk about 2 miles with stella on me on top of a 50 lbs suitcase, strollers, and backpack.... dumb..I will never complain about traveling in the states again when it to a road trip! I do love the trains here once I know i'm on the right one. We don't have to worry about traffic, or any delays! It leaves on the nose!

Things I have learned:
having to hang all my clothes to dry (in my bathroom)
no one buys bulk groceries for the week like us. They have one or two items in basket, and go daily.
You have to bring your own bag for grocery (I forget every time and have to stuff it in my clothes on my bike.)
The kids here are the most behaved little kids. They are never naughty.
no one talks on the trains... like dead silence--everyone is very aware when stella is on a train.
Overall most are excited we are here, others don't like it and we can tell!
I hate not having an oven, dishwasher, or dryer.
No one wears workout clothes like we do in America out.
You usually dont see kids in resturaunts (usually men with men, girls with girls)
They are obsessed with selfies.
You cant find turkey for sandwhiches here, or sour cream.
A costco just opened 45 mins away (game changer) as I can live off of bread here.
The bakery is amazing! They know me in there now since I go so much.

I know this was a long one, but a lot has happened, and I have to document for us. I swear I may write a book one day at least for my family. 😊 We love and miss you all!

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