Contentment

It’s always easier to blog when you’re upset about something than when you’re feeling content.  Content isn’t a strong emotion that motivates people to get out of their chair and write something, but today, I feel content enough that I wanted to share it.  That’s a huge change from the past 6 months.

Yes, the arrival of my daughter has something to do with it – she’s already impressed me with her wonderful personality – and she’s not even two weeks old yet.  As a father, I couldn’t be any happier.

But, it’s not just that.  A LOT of my complaints about our relocation to denmark have been solved.  Not all of them, but enough of them.  Relocating to a house that suits us has made a massive impact on our quality of life, and is probably most responsible for the change.  We’re close enough to the city that I was able to bike out to get take-out dinner from a Thai restaurant – and the Pad Thai was awesome. (Thanks to a colleague for the recommendation!)  The day before, I was able to bike out to our favorite bakery and pick up some great bread.  Little things like this were impossible from our last house and it’s amazing how much of a change it is to be able to run errands without a 45 minute bus ride into town.

Additionally, the weather in Denmark suddenly “snapped” into summer mode a few days ago.  From the dismal highs of 12C and blustery winds, to suddenly becoming 20C with a wonderful gentle breeze, the weather is gorgeous by any standard.  And the long summer days stretch late into the evening, and start early in the morning.  The 4:30am diaper change this morning was done without turning on the lights, as the sky was already bright enough to illuminate the room. Truly, Danish summers are shaping up to be glorious.

And finally, after about 6 months, I’m starting to understand the language around me.  I was able to listen to a few minutes of news and grasp the point of the discussion (Aarhus had to buy bigger ambulances because the patients they’re transporting are too fat…)  – a new high point in my life in Denmark.  I’m also able to read emails and I’ve begun to read the local weekly newspaper.  I use my phone to translate a lot of words, but I’m learning and I can make sense out of things.  I no longer dread walking into stores and not understanding anything, and having even a basic comprehension feels like a huge weight off my back.

So, there you have it.  Nearly 6 months in, and suddenly, Denmark isn’t so bad after all.

On the bright side, I think I’ve learned a lot about myself – about being more aggressive in going after what I want and need, about not making assumptions, about being more understanding of those who have the courage to move to a new country.  This has been a valuable lesson for me in so many ways, and has probably helped shape me into a better person, which is worth some amount of pain.  Now, the goal is to build off of it and use this to become a more productive person.

It’s a bit late for a new years resolution, but I’m not going to bask in my contentment today – I have things to do.  Blogging it was just the first on my list.

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