The Monaghans

Going Back..... The Return!!!

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    Well now, I guess the time has finally come to put the record straight about our return to the UK - and the incredible speed with which we ping ponged. I think enough time has passed to let us put it into some kind of perspective and I'll try to keep it upbeat but if truth be told, this has been the most awful bloody year in a very long time.

     

    OK. So after finally selling our house we spent a final weekend in the city at the end of July to say goodbye to all our wonderful friends. There was a very, very drunken night out at the Belgian Beer Cafe and then we flew back to the UK via Sydney and Kuala Lumpur. (Loved Sydney by the way, gorgeous place...) We landed at Heathrow at about 4.30pm on a wet, cold Wednesday evening. Heathrow was disgustingly dirty and we found it incredible that it took us longer to go through immigration on our British passports than all the other people going through on non-British passports. We were met by Richie's sister who was delighted to see us again but I have to admit I think she was taken aback by our lack of enthusiasm on returning. I should explain I think, that although we were returning to the UK voluntarily, it had dawned on us before we even left that we were probably doing the wrong thing, especially as far as the children were concerned. Yes, we found it a struggle financially and yes, we desperately missed our families, but saying goodbye to our friends and our life here in Adelaide had been unbelievably hard. The children were brilliant about it all, but then kids are just so flexible at their age (6 and 4) Anyway, the next few days passed in a bit of a blur. We were re-united with our families and the grandma's were ecstatic at seeing the children again.

     

    For Richie and I though it was a nightmare. We'd originally had such high hopes about our return to the UK. We had guaranteed jobs, our old house back and everything had seemed "right" to go back. However, almost immediately it began to unravel. We couldn't get both children into the school we had chosen and eventually had to put them into the only one that could take both of them. I won't go into too much detail here, I find it very painful as our daughter had such a terrible couple of weeks there. Try to imagine standing outside the school gates and watching your 6 year old daughter wandering from one group of children to another, trying to find someone to play with and being rejected by every single group. I had to watch that and believe me I sobbed all the way home. I'm actually crying now just remembering it. We'd taken her from a school which she loved and all her friends and put her into a school where all friendships and groups were already formed and she couldn't break her way in.

     

    It all went wrong on the house front as well as we were unable to move into our house for nearly three weeks as the tenant simply refused to leave. When he finally left we found the house in such bad repair that we were unable to use the main bedroom so the children had to share one room whilst we slept in the other. It took three weeks of hard graft on Richie's part to get the house back into a liveable condition but by then we already knew that we wanted to come back to Adeleaide.

     

    During our short stay in the UK we witnessed teenage gang fights in the street and teenage shoplifters resisting security guards in Tesco. Our children saw more violence in 8 weeks than they've seen in their whole lives.

     

    We must have changed our minds about what to do a thousand times over our first 5 weeks in the UK. We knew that if we followed our hearts and returned to Adelaide we would absolutely devastate our families. But in the end, it was the only decision that we could make. Telling my mum we were going again was so, so horrible. But bless her, she said she could see how unhappy we all were and she didn't blame us in the slightest for changing our minds. I feel quite ashamed that we put our children and parents through so much grief, we'd gone back to make everyone happy and we'd ended up making things a million times worse.

     

    Anyway, long story short (ish). We turned the furniture around at the docks, booked the poor bloody dog into quarantine in Sydney and booked our own flights back. Once we'd made the decision we started to relax and became "tourists". We went to Stratford upon Avon, Drayton Manor Park, Tamworth Snowdome and had a fabulous time. The children loved it all as well, probably because we were more relaxed. Eventually, we said all our goodbyes again and flew back to Adelaide in early October, to be greeted at the airport by some of our lovely friends waving a big banner and pelting us with ping pong balls as we walked up the ramp! The first few weeks back were crazy, house hunting every weekend as well as getting ready for school and work. Hattie went straight back to her old class at school, I returned to my old job with Westpac and Richie started a new job within a couple of days of returning. We bought another house which we moved into at the end of November and we're gradually starting to settle down again.

     

    It's been a painful and expensive exercise but I think it's something we simply had to do. We could have gone back on holiday but I don't think it would have been the same. We had to go back to exorcise a few ghosts I guess, it's made us appreciate what we have here all the more.

     

    I re-read my original post and all the wonderful replies before typing this and I wanted to say how grateful we are for all the kind words that came from PIA members. I hope some of you find this post informative and maybe if some of you are "wobbling", it will give you some food for thought.

     

    Let me please just say this again though, I'm not bashing the UK here. I'm simply saying we didn't feel that we could live there anymore. We will definitely go back again for a holiday - but not for at least another three years and we're definitely not taking Trev!

     

    Thanks for listening again.

    xx

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    Guest moonraker1959

    Oh dear!!! Sounds like you had abit of a terrible time in the UK,what part did you return to?Atleast now you can spend the rest of your days in the safe knowledge that this time you know 100% you've done the right thing for you and your family.Best wishes for a happy successful future!

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    Guest Guest75

    Thanks for sharing Liz, I amongst many appreciate you taking the time to share .

     

    Onwards and upwards now!!!!:cute:

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    Good on ya guys.....thanks for posting this....this may be a bit of an eye opener for people living here to realise how bad the UK has got...

     

    All the best in the rest of your years here in Adelaide.

     

     

    HG

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    Guest The Dimmocks

    Great post, nearly made me cry. Glad it all worked out well for you and you happy to be back in Adelaide.

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    Guest lastboyscout

    Glad you all made it `home` safely and tell Rich, Up the Villa :biglaugh:

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    Hey, Great post guys....

     

     

    Hopefully you can finally be as happy as you deserve to be after all the hard work emotional and manual!!

     

    Nice that visited my old hangout (Tamworth)!!!

     

    Dan

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    Thanks for sharing this with everybody, must admit sometimes we think of going back - especially with the exchange rates at the min. We could have a better house, without the mortgage ! Best wishes for the future

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    Guest guest3462

    Fantastic post- it made me cry!!! We went back for 2 weeks and thought more or less the same! How brave you all were! Wishing you all the very best for a wonderful 2011 xxxx

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    Guest Nick11

    I am still in trauma and counselling over the Belgium bar affair Monaghan!!!!!!

    But ever so glad you are back

    xxxxxx

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    (((((hugstoyourfamily)))))

     

    Thanks for sharing your story and your experience of going and coming back again... hope you're not too out of pocket but so glad you know you are in the right place for your family- cos that's what gets us through the inevitable hard times here. As long as we know its the right place, we can allow ourselves to find it hard occasionally and be stronger as a result. xxx

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    Thanks for sharing your story......you even visited my home town when you were back (stratford upon avon). I'm not too sure where I want to be at the moment so it was so good to read your story, and I wish you all the best ....hope it all works out for you

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    Guest kangomik

    Well done on making the trip, it could not have been nice. Thank you so much for sharing this experience with us I hope the kids are loving being back here.

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    Guest heth

    Ah what a nice ending to a tragic story. I am so pleased you have decided to stay, we have been here just over 4 years, and would not change it for the world. Hope things keep getting better for you all. take care.

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    Liz

     

    You never cease to amaze me with your insightful and honest posts. They certainly give PIA members a chance to embrace the ups and downs of the enormity of the courage it takes to put ourselves, our children and our loved ones through the whole migration process. I am full of admiration for what you have done and have followed your developments with keen interest, not only through curiosity but as a person who has many times considered returning home for similar reasons (stated in your original post). Your sharing of your experience and the pain and suffering you and your families have endured is a huge gift to all of us so thank you again.

    And good luck with your new-old life in Adelaide, sounds like you've got it all sorted though!

     

    Take care

    Dette :)

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    Guest cbeeb

    are you irish? i always thought one of you were. if i am wrong please correct did you go back there?. We lived in wexford that is why i being nosy

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    Guest moonraker1959
    Good on ya guys.....thanks for posting this....this may be a bit of an eye opener for people living here to realise how bad the UK has got...

     

    All the best in the rest of your years here in Adelaide.

     

     

    HG

    Is that fair Heaps Good?The UK might be "bad"in some parts but for alot of us,the UK is still a great place to live!It would be like saying to someone who had moved from Elizabeth "This may be abit of an eye opener for people living here(UK)to realise how bad Australia's got?

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    Guest cunnah10

    As a fellow ping ponger I can so relate !! Good for you realizing you needed to get back here to Adelaide asap .. Wishing you & your family a very Happy New year & I am sure 2011 will be a really good one for you .. Gill x

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    are you irish? i always thought one of you were. if i am wrong please correct did you go back there?. We lived in wexford that is why i being nosy

     

    I guess the surname is a bit mis-leading cbeeb! Richie's family are originally from Ireland but we were both born and bred in Birmingham, which is where we returned to. We've been to Wexford though, beautiful place. :cute:

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    Guest garlic--bread

    What a great post, to say you have suffered ups and downs would be the understatement of the year. Good luck and best wishes for a better 2011!

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    Guest caoimhe

    Realising you had made a mistake in returning is one thing, having the courage to return here is very brave. Unlike so many of us you now know living in Adelaide is the best thing for you all.

    We wish you every happiness for the future.

    Jacqui, Stephen and Boys xxx

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    Guest stella01

    Hiya

     

    We are the same. We returned here on 14th December and already know it was the wrong decision. Im glad we did in a way as it has got it out my head that I wanted to come back. We lived in Melbourne though but we didnt like where we lived.

     

    We have managed to stop our furniture being shipped and a least that will be there and we only have to move it from Melbourne to Adelaide. If anyone could recommend any of the suburbs we would appreciate it. We have a 1 year old and my OH is an electrician. We would prefer somewhere which is more of a town rather than where we lived in Melbourne which was basically just a huge housing estate and you had to travel to the shops etc.

     

    As you say expensive holiday but at least now we know we made the right decision moving to Australia.

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    Guest SA Great

    Really interesting post by the Monaghans! Well done, fascinating reading. Good luck with the future. I had to laugh at the post from Moonraker. Really doesnt like anyone saying the UK is bad!! LOL

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