When I left for R&R, I was tired. I needed a break. I needed to recharge my filter, the one that keeps the thoughts in my head from escaping via my mouth. But I still loved living in Estonia.
When I came back, I....didn't.
I landed in Tallinn with a sense of utter dread. It was so cold and so dark and I felt the most profound feeling of not being at home and of wanting to go home, meaning back to the states.
And frankly, that terrified me. Because we have another year and a half here. And I couldn't bear the thought of being that unhappy for a year and a half.
I was happy to see our pets. I went to work and was happy to see our friends and co-workers (even though I found out that two were having to leave us and I was REALLY unhappy about that!). But I really didn't want to be at work and really didn't want to be in Estonia.
And the idea terrified me if the place that I had been so happy, the place that felt like home, and the place that had been my very favorite tour so far could suddenly not be any of those things, what hope was there for my staying in the foreign service. And being happy about it.
And then Friday, my wife and I went to dinner together. We had survived our first week back and went to one of our favorite places in Tallinn, which luckily for us, is also across the street. And one of our regular waitresses was there. And she spoke to us in Estonian because she knows we like that even though her English is far better than our Estonian.
And suddenly, as I was watching the people walking around and eating the familiar food of the place, and chatting with my wife, the feeling lifted.
And I was happy to be home.
And a sense of true relief washed over me as I realized I really liked Estonia again. That I will not be miserable for a year and a half because I really do like it here.
And like a tiny extra reward for not yielding to my panic, today, the sun visited. And I went outside in 23 degree weather thinking was a beautiful, sunny, WARM day it was.
But that week was really terrifying.
Of course, tonight, after all of those revelations, as I sat in my office about to write this, I noticed the room was getting chilly. I went and checked all our radiators and found they were not really working...not icy, but not warm by any stretch. And since they are heated with warm water, I checked our hot water. Also not icy, but not warm by any stretch.
So hopefully I will get the heat back soon so I can still love it here.