My past decade

I read at a few other blogs a decennium review and I found it very interesting. Clearly in 10 years our lives have changed so drastically and so much has happened...and yet sometimes it all seems so trivial and deep down not much has changed at all.

I figured it would be fun and interesting to do the exercise myself and write down the main things that happend in the previous 10 years. I believe less changed than the decade before where I met my husband, moved, renovated a house, moved again, had a first job and got a 2nd job etc...

So what about previous decade?

When crossing the country on diving weekends we had started dreaming of spending our weekends in the nature of the country side.  Jan had started entering search filters on real estate and in the winter 2010 we were prospecting several properties at 60-90 min from Leuven.  We finally bid on a little house in the east of Belgium and got the keys in July so we spent our summer vacation days there renovating the most urgent rooms and continued at a lower pace for the rest of the year.  Fortunately we could just close the door and return to Leuven to escape from the dust when we had enough of it.

Right at the moment I became more and more frustrated in my job, I got the offer to exchange and work at regional level in Amsterdam. So after years that Jan lived part-time abroad, it was my turn to commute internationally and spend several nights per week in a hotel.
We travelled through Canada where we did a long roadtrip. The schedule was tight but I managed to  spend a little bit of time with my host families again. A few weeks after our return home, I lost my host dad from my first host family.

In 2012 we had several diving vacations, similarly like the years before. This blog was in those years more a dive blog than something else in some periods.  We dove in Egypt where we already felt quite at home and we also had a vacation in Bonaire. I had no idea then that those were the last dives for many years, although we had been trying to get pregnant for a while.

The new year started in the best way it could start although I had to lie at a bunch of New Year's receptions why I didn't want to drink any alcohol.  In September our live changed drastically as we became parents of a gorgeous little Kabouter.  Unlike what I had anticipated, I fought for long-term breastfeeding (despite it being way harder at the start than I had imagined), for co-sleeping etc... I was exhausted but on cloud nine and that soothed the bitterness for losing my job in the same period.

At the start of the New Year I brought our little Kabouter part-time to the daycare to start searching for a new job and that search turned out to be so fast successful that I couldn't even benefit from the outplacement I was entitled too.  After 3 years of international commuting I worked within 25 kms from home again without any traffic jams.  I must admit I was much better off now as a new mom.

After a few successful city trips in 2014,  we enjoyed traveling with a baby toddler and we continued city trips to Stockholm, Copenhagen, ... but we also returned to Canada to show off our little boy to our friends there. This time we booked a bit more time with my host families compared to our blitz visit 4 years before.

In Copenhagen, I combined business travel with a long family weekend there. I had to hide nausea from my colleagues since was carrying new life again.

Winter 2016 brought us a gorgeous little Beertje and Kabouter became a big brother. I spent a few months on cloud nine again, much more relax this 2nd time.  I knew how quickly this infant phase would pass so I treasured it as much as I could.

In those winter months my parents left for a vacation to Spain but my dad fell on their arrival day and broke his hip. He had to spend weeks in a Spanish hospital before he was fit enough to get repatriated and surgery in Belgium. What followed were months of revalidation while his physical and mental health deteriorated dramatically.  My parents celebrated their 50th anniversary at the UZ Gent, where the neurologists managed to recalibrate all medication and finally improve my dad's health again so he could return home in autumn.

At the end of the year we ended up being roofless for a month when we launch some dramatic renovations in Leuven . The roof and top floor got destructed and a new floor and brand new higher roof got rebuilt.

We enjoyed being the parents of 2 tiny boys. We continued to live for several months on 2 floors instead of 4 at our home in Leuven while sleeping with all 4 of us in one room for half a year.  As if we couldn't get enough of all renovations while having babies, we also launched renovations on the attic in the Ardennes, trying to create functional spaces there and extra space for the 2 children. We started to use an extra bedroom and bathroom

At work I was involved with some nice projects and I also took over the management position of a colleague during her maternity leave.

In the Summer my father had issues with his hip replacement again and required a new surgery.  Another 5 months of fractures, surgery and difficult revalidation followed.

The  new year started with loads of snow fun in the Ardennes.  In ,Spring and Summer I continued to plaster and paint the last spaces on the attic in the Ardennes so we also have a desk corner and the children have a big play room (/ potential extra spare sleeping room).

We spent a family vacation with my in-law family in Cannes.  For the 3rd year in a row we enjoyed a transatlantic US roadtrip with the children.

Beertje started school.

The year 2019 was a difficult year as my dad's health had deteriorated in such a degree that we had to take the decision that he could no longer live at home with my mother.

We travelled to Canada again, for the first time with Beertje. The gorgeous beauty of the Rocky Mountains and the time with my family and friends revitalised me. 

The Summer announced itself better and I was grasping air again when all of a sudden fate hit us. I lost my father on a moment we did not expect it at all.  Mourning him, released all good memories what he was like before he got ill.  Those memories had been suppressed in the last years due to the continuous worries about his health and care.

Kabouter started elementary school and started to read in Grade 1.


Idea from Samaja and Levelieze


Le petit requin said…
Amai, dat zijn anders toch ook tien jaar met veel verandering! Heel tof om je leven zo te zien evolueren (ga ik op mijn blog toch ook eens iets mee doen, denk ik).
Ik moet hier trouwens duidelijk eens in de archieven gaan snuffelen, want zeer benieuwd naar zowel de duiken als de renovaties :)
Goofball said…
@le petit requin: ja kinderen krijgen verandert je leven nogal drastisch natuurlijk. Toch heb ik het gevoel dat de grote levenskeuzes en veranderingen meer in mijn 22-32 jaar lagen (en dat daar wellicht ook wel al beslist was om kinderen te krijgen...ze waren er gewoon nog niet).

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