The world is becoming more globally connected, and as an American black woman I want to get with it and I suggest those of you who are willing to do the same. I first heard regarding the opportunity to create a new life for myself in New Zealand through Lorraine Spencer of Swirling and Marriage. When I expressed an interest in finding out more information, she introduced me to Getrude Matshe a beautiful African woman from Zimbabwe who has created ( and still creating) a beautiful life for herself and her family in NZ and my eyes were opened. I have traveled overseas, but never considered cooling my heels in any place but the United States, however conversations with Getrude and Lorraine helped me to more possibilities for myself as an expat.
I will be blunt, one of the main reasons I am considering this radical relocation is I WANT TO GET MARRIED!!!! I have lived in the United States all of my life and my dating life has been practically non-existent! I am single, no children, a 20 year career in administration behind me, I currently own my own business and am in the process of publishing my first book. I have a lot to offer, but have appeared invisible for the most part. I know the question to follow, “did you put yourself out there?”, “you gotta go where the men are”, and so on and truth be told, if I put myself any more “out there” I would have to relocate to the moon! The thought did cross my mind to becoming an expat, but I put it away like a load of folded laundry. When I spoke to Lorraine, she mentioned this opportunity and I began to reconsider. Lorraine shared with me the African American women who have made the moved overseas (some are in New Zealand, some in Austrailia, etc.) and the quality men they met and married. These women are very happy and content and have never looked back.
Let me say that neither one of these ladies promised me streets paved with gold or the such, they were honest in telling me and other inquiring women that it would be an adjustment, simply because it was a different part of the world with a different culture and way of life. They did not promise a prince either, but they did put in our minds the notion to think more globally than just American and be open to richer experiences. We as Americans have a tendency to be very spoiled so we want things to adjust around us instead of us adjusting to our new enviroment that attitude needs to change, it is not my job to convince you otherwise, I am just saying. To get a different result, we have to do things differently and that may mean a radical change in our surroundings.
While this radical change may not be for everyone, what concerns me are those who are hell bent on poisoning the minds of women before they even have the chance to consider. They mention things like the fact in regards to New Zealand the fact that so many white South Africans moved there after Apartheid and the danger of encountering racism, AND????? I don’t know about you, but I have encountered my share of racism and discrimination here and I was born after the civil rights movement. There is not one place on this planet that you or I will be able to go and not experience those who are advocates of racism or colorism, that is just the way it is we can either let it affect us or create a life for ourselves that will limit its influence on our happiness. The women (and men) who are discouraging women from moving overseas in the name of “being helpful” or “just trying to protect” do not care one iota about their happiness and they need to just shut up, they are being the crabs in the bucket in the name of “safety”. It is no different in America, we deal with racism and colorism here but somehow we find a way to “adjust” and deal with it right? So would it be any different dealing with it in another country? Let me put it another way, if you were in a situation where you HAD to live abroad you would find a way like Tim Gunn famously says to “make it work”.
There are those who would say, “you can’t find a man in America?” To that I say of course! I am not saying the ONLY way you or I can find a mate is to live in another country that would be foolish, what I am saying is I want to open my self to the best possibilities available to me and that includes not limiting myself to American soil. The world is rich with culture and different ways of life and sometimes you never know what awaits you unless you give it a try. Sometimes things don’t work out because something better awaits us just outside our comfort zone. I am on this planet because one of my parents moved from his native country in Central America to America to create a new life for himself. He was 19 years old. He told me he was scared, lonely and homesick, but he stuck it out and he eventually adjusted. He met my mother two years later, they married and had me and my siblings, but that would have never happened had my father not taken the chance to leave what he knew for the unknown. Today he is an American citizen and doing fine, fully American, loves hamburgers the Los Angeles Lakers and the Los Angeles Dodgers.
I understand to make such a transition takes a lot of planning and consideration, not to mention money! It is wise to consider the cost before making such a decision and I do not mean to be inconsiderate of all that is involved, it is a serious decision. What I am coming against is not considering it out of FEAR and doing further damage by imposing your fear on others. If you are single with no children then what is stopping you? YOU! I am glad to have met Lorraine and Getrude and God willing as things fall together, my passport will soon have a New Zealand stamp in it as the starting leg for a new chapter in my life. If push comes to shove, I can always move back, but I will never look back.