now we can breathe.


it’s finally officially official… again. my love has her visa!! (which she actually got in june – from the american embassy in stockholm). but, the most important thing now is that it is valid – which it was not when we landed, according to the lady checking our passports. there was a signature missing from lina’s university and without that one tiny little signature (the name was typed, but not signed), her whole visa and everything was invalid (even though the american embassy in stockholm issued and validated her visa).

anyway… so the department of homeland security (immigration and all that) whisked her into an interview room. read more about my experiences (= freak out meltdown at baggage claim) during her little interview time here. at the end of the interview, they gave her only one month to stay in the states. she had to get that signature from the person at her university and send the forms to washington, dc, and then they would validate her visa and she could stay. but it all had to be done within a month. and according to her passport when we arrived on july 18, they only gave her until august 16. so basically her visa was only good for ONE MONTH – not the five years that it actually said.

well, last week came and we began wondering if the US government was going to send back her forms and validate her visa for the whole 4-5 years again. i mean, it was only a week left until august 16. we checked the mail obsessively, but nothing arrived. we began wondering if we were gonna have to buy her a plane ticket back to sweden. well, the school was gonna have to buy the ticket, since it was their fault this was happening – though they have been great and totally, completely embarrassed & sorry this happened.

by today we were in a bit of panic mode. with only 3 days to go on her visa and only 3 days to legally be in the states, lina still had not received anything. so, lina emailed her university. long story, short. the school emailed her back at once and told her to call whoever in washington. then, they emailed almost immediately after that and said that there had been a letter delivered to them saying that her visa was now valid for the entire time and that we could come by and pick up the papers.

WOO HOO! now, lina is officially here for her entire university education!! now i/we can finally breathe completely and know that this is where we live… together. no worries about being separated (we dealt with that so much in the beginning of our relationship, living in separate countries, traveling back & forth, spending 3 months together, 3 months apart). but, now, we are here.

and we’re here to stay. for now… (hehe).

oh yeah! and more big news! our first visitors have booked their trip & bought their plane tickets!! next may, lina’s mom & two of her aunts will be spending a week with us. we’re so excited. so, all you other friends and family all over the world, in the states, wherever… the calendar’s filling up, so pick your dates and let us know!

i’m gonna go and celebrate now! peace out. love.

now more than ever.

i’m freaking out. and i guess it’s time. perhaps i deserve it. i mean, i’ve had all this time off. you know, the two weeks i spent in the states enjoying life. i guess i need to face reality and stop bitching. ok. i’m not really bitching, i’m just freaking out.

but, when did this happen? when did i go from having all the time in the world to having no time at all?

  • year one in sweden: too much time on my hands & no motivation to use that time to write. i couldn’t. i felt paralyzed in one way, as i tried to find my place here.
  • year two in sweden: work, internship, life moving at warp speed, and all the motivation to write but no time to do it.

oh, the irony. it’s just crazy. hey, isn’t there a balance somewhere? does it really have to be so extreme, or at least feel so extreme? why does it seem to be all or nothing?

well, it’s more good than bad with all of the craziness in life… it just makes my head feel like it might explode, and i find myself dreaming of (obsessing about) spending an entire day in my pjs – which ain’t gonna happen any time soon. nevertheless, it’s really good (reaaaally good!) to have found my place here, to feel like i belong, to build my own life (with my love) here; and today at work was really good. really productive. really fun. i was listening to some swedish (which of course i do all the time because, well, that’s life), and i realized that it was me talking. i was goin’ to town speaking swedish, not necessarily like everyone else, but it was flowing easily out of my mouth. feeling natural in some way. oh yeah. felt awesome. again, i say, it’s really good to be building my life here.

when i got home after the super, super cold 8 block walk & a trip to the grocery store for milk , i was ready to put on my cozy pants, pull on my favorite t-shirt, slip on my slippers, wrap up in my blanket, and spend the rest of the day with my love. i did exactly that & it has been great. we’ve been chatting some about some trips (YAY!!!) that we are planning… paris in the spring (hello. i’m dying here!) and a possible early summer trip with our friend to gotland, an amazing swedish island. old, cozy, beautiful, natural, fairy-tale-like, i hear. in looking at our calendars, it came to my attention that every weekend, and i mean every weekend is booked from now until may.

and that made me freak out. lina too, i think.

 me not freaking out.

how am i gonna make it? i need & crave down time. i’m a recluse with a hermit’s heart. i mean, i enjoy spending time with people, hanging out with friends, and doing all the awesome stuff we have planned, but i also really enjoy (need) time to just be. when is that going to happen? and then i remembered… my 30 minutes of quiet every day – used to read, meditate, write, take pictures, walk, be. no phone. no computer. no internet. just me, a cup of coffee (if the activity allows it), a book/journal, a camera (depending on the day), and some music (if i want it). the only way i will survive this crazy, fun, over-the-top-busy spring is if i prioritize my “me time”. it is so necessary.

now more than ever.

here’s wishing you an amazing week. and some time to chill squeezed in somewhere, somehow. just do it. i’m gonna.

peace & quiet.