Family Connections Across The Miles

After a cross-country move, you spend a lot of time settling in and adapting to your new surroundings. There’s a new routine to be established, new favorite places to discover, and it can take months to fully feel you have settled to it.

When the huge change begins to dissipate and you find a new normal way of life, you would think it should be smooth sailing from that point on. You can just relax, take things at ease, with all of the problems and heartache behind you.

Except… it never really works out like that, does it?

Whether it’s your first big move or something you have done a number of times, there is always something you leave behind. In the worst case scenario, that ‘something’ might, in fact, be a group of someones – your family. If you move for business or work-related reasons, then it’s unlikely you’re going to have moved with your relatives. Of course, your family will be with you – partner, children – but you will have potentially left behind your parents and even your siblings.

The initial phases of adapting to this new status quo are fun, but it can soon feel like the distance between you is a yawning chasm you can’t quite make it over. If you have moved to far-flung climes that don’t make visiting easy, then without proper management, you can feel the gulf between you growing every day.

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The only way of combating this feeling is to fight back and learn to take the leap. Over time – to extend the metaphor to breaking point – you will find a huge leap becomes more of a short hop, as you practice it to the point of becoming second nature.

  1. Don’t Rely On Social Media

Staying connected is easier than ever, but don’t fall into the trap of updating your family on new developments the way you do with old school friends and that guy from college whose friends invite you didn’t have the heart to turn down. Social media is a useful tool, but it shouldn’t be your only tool.

Reserve some photos and updates for your family alone – or at the very least, for them to hear first. Utilize the likes of MyPostcard App to send photos of your kids so that your parents don’t have to miss a second of them growing up; write letters and make telephone calls a part of your weekly ritual. See social media as a tool, but not your only tool, for maintaining a link.

  1. Send Care Packages

You see a cute keyring while out shopping and think how much your sister would like it; or spot a set of knives you know your culinary-inspired father would adore. Rather than waiting for birthdays and Christmases, if you have the funds, spend the initial months after a move buying gifts.

It’s not the monetary value that matters; a $1 purchase is all it takes if you’re so inclined. It’s just a way of saying: ‘I thought of you in my new life; you’re still on my mind, and here’s a physical representation of that’.

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