I can imagine living here

Today, for the first time in six years, I imagined myself living back in the UK full time.

I pushed the pram up the hill back to my mums, chatting away merrily to my four year old, waving at the bin men, and it hit me that I could actually imagine my life like this.

Life in the leafy surburbs of England

Since we moved out to the desert I’ve embraced the expat life.

I was the original reluctant expat. I did NOT want to move to Dubai, leave the life we had built in London. But then, slowly, the life has crept up on me. I’ve embraced it and realised that you get out what you put in.

Everything I was afraid of, everything I didn’t want to happen, was all the stereotypes I had read. And I’ve realised that life is more than stereotypes.

children waiting for the bus

I am not an expat wife

I’ve rejected the stereotypical expat wife status, I don’t sit round sipping gin and spending on my husbands credit card. I don’t shop until I drop and leave my children with the nanny whilst I live it up. I don’t throw money at a million and one different clubs for us all. We just kind of live our normal, day to day life, fighting with the children, an argument over putting their school shoes on each day and bedtime issues. Just like I’d have here. And I’ve found a multitude of friends on the same page.

I’m just me living somewhere else

And that somewhere else has a lot of people with a similar outlook on life. The fact that we’re all in the same boat has meant for some instantaneous and life long friendships springing up.

I love the fluidity of life, the ease at which I will meet someone one day and have them over at my house the next day.

I adore the fact that we’re all in the same boat, living away from family, making your friends your family.

And I’ve made some of the very best friends I could have ever hoped for.

So why can I imagine a new life in England?

Was it seeing friends I made in Dubai having successfully repatriated into life here. Having spent years in the desert yet slotting in perfectly. Talking about the school run, the British schools their children attend, the school sports day, nativities?

Is it the nostalgia of walking past my old primary school knowing that my children may never know what a UK primary system is like.

Maybe it’s that the weather is so perfect, not too hot, not raining, that I can get out and BREATHE the air in. That running is a joy and I’m not sweating just by leaving the house.


Or perhaps it’s the questions my children ask me, the ones which I take for granted that they will know, but they don’t because they don’t live here. Like what is a radiator? Why does Grandma have so many bins?! What is a dandelion clock?

blowing dandelion clock

Maybe it’s the wonderful days out we’re experiencing.

It could be that I’m ready to settle, to buy a house and make it a family home.

Maybe it’s a thousand reasons why. And another thousand why not.

But all of a sudden I’m not opposed to the idea any more.



  1. August 20, 2019 / 9:45 pm

    I’ve had exactly the same feeling the last 3 times I’ve come back to the UK! Sadly, the husband is not on board at all. Hates the UK. But I’m in full blown panic about the children’s schooling (it’s AWFUL in Malta with basic subjects not even on the curriculum) and their future. Am honestly considering moving back to the UK and – shock horror – living with the inlaws while hubby works here!

    • Laura
      August 20, 2019 / 9:56 pm

      I think we a have a potential five year plan, but then we were moving back three years ago and look how that turned out! School worries me. Really worries me. I feel your pain xxx

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