Thursday, 1 January 2015

Leaving Home

Hello friends and family! 

Kyle and I have started to settle in on Nevis. I have decided to write down our journey through this exciting adventure. I think telling the story from my perspective as being a spouse of a medical student, living on an island will hopefully help others who decide to embark on this journey. 
I hope to keep this updated as best as I can, so bare with me as this is my first time blogging!

I'll give you some background information on how Kyle and I came to make this decision. Kyle came to me almost 2 years ago saying he needs to be more challenged, and although he loved his job and had learned so much from his work, he needed more. In the beginning I just went a long with it, thinking Kyle needed to explore this decision on his own and get it out of his system. Little did I know he was very serious about this and when he came to me saying we could move to Poland or England I started to panic a little. I started to reevaluate everything, thinking long term, thinking about having kids, thinking about my family, his family. Us. However, I needed to pause and think about what Kyle really wanted, and I realized he just wants to be happy. I love my job and love what I do, and I feel everyone should able to have that same feeling, and for Kyle if that means becoming a doctor then I need to support that. So we went to an information session about medical schools in the Caribbean. Kyle did his research of course, and found this to be the best option for us. Plus I love the beach! 
The only condition I made was that I can't be bored, because although living on the beach for the next 2 years sounds fun, I like to be busy and active. He assured me that I would be taken care of and I do trust him with that. So, I started looking up Masters programs for my field and I was able to get accepted to an online program for Masters in Education. 

So through prayer and intense conversations with friends and family, it was time to start this journey. Once Kyle had been accepted, it was time to start planning, and I just kept taking this in steps, that has been the best way to help me stay positive.  I notified my work, Kyle did the same. That was very hard for both of us, but the amount of support we received in making this decision just confirmed it was the right one. So thank you to everyone who has been there for us. 
We then had to figure out our loan situation, and all I will saw about that is TD was not helpful at all, Scotiabank is the way to go. Flights were booked, we had to get our physicals done and get travel insurance, health insurance and all that. It does take some time for that stuff so the earlier you start, the better. We sold our car (on the last day in Canada) and packed up our house and suit cases and we were ready to leave.
One important thing I will mention is shipping stuff to the island is highly recommended. We shipped 4 big tubs through Tropical Shipping at only $200 US. We only had about 2 days notice though because we found out it takes about a month to ship items. I recommended shipping any food items you can think of. Most brand name items on the island here are more expensive than home, so we had one tub full of food.
 We shipped other items such as 
pots and pans, 
extra toiletry supplies,
 sheets and towels, 
school supplies, 
a slow cooker, 
toilet paper, 
cleaning supplies, 
some small tools
printer and some back up power supplies. 
Those I found were some of the more important items. I can try and upload a complete list of items we shipped if some of you want. 

Anyway once we shipped everything, it felt like a huge wait had been lifted. We were able to enjoy Christmas with our families and then just pack up our suitcases a day or two before we left. We each had 2 bags and then our carry-on bag. That seemed to be enough for all of our stuff.

Day 1 of travel: So we left on December 29th, 2014. Saying goodbye to our families left me feeling with mixed emotions. All the planning, and packing was done, goodbyes had been said and although it was hard, at the same time I couldn't help but feel excited to start this new journey. Kyle helped me keep calm by reminding me to take this in steps. Step  1:get to the airport, step 2: check our luggage, etc. We travelled to Miami without any trouble and we met up with the Crank family! It was awesome to see our friends and catch up. One thing to remember is to notify banks that you are travelling, we did that while waiting in the airport. We were able to ship a few items like textbooks to our friends house in the states and then add them to our luggage, which saved us some money. Once we were packed up and exhausted from travelling, it was time for a short rest before the next step of our journey.

This photo was taken at the airport in Toronto ready to head off to Miami.

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