Our expat life is often perceived as a longterm holiday because we tend to live where people vacation. The reality is that, while we love living in these places for many reasons, we definitely face the same challenges as “back home.” For example, I recently became rather depressed as holiday blues and job search stress collided. Hard. For the second year in a row. And were compounded by culture shock. Recognizing what was happening based on previous experience was helpful, but in the end, I just had to reach out and ride it out.
This was the first year the kids really got into Halloween. However, they did find it scary and death has been on their minds. Celebrating Día De Los Muertos offered a much more positive way of conceptualizing death and the afterlife. It is an ongoing dance as expats embrace aspects that we value in our own culture while exploring components of other cultures that deeply enrich our identities as global citizens.