Because I haven’t seen my family in over a year

When we decided to leave New York, our options were to move near Zach’s family in Massachusetts (one day I’ll learn to spell that without spellcheck) or near my family in Tennessee. We knew that choosing one was ultimately choosing to not to see the other one for a while and to see them a lot less throughout the year. It was the toughest decision we’ve ever had to make. We made a pros and cons list and ultimately, we decided we needed to move somewhere that would be easiest for the whole family. Zach made the final call to move to Tennessee (which surprised me, because we’ve always wanted to live near his family) and so we packed up and moved here and we haven’t seen his family since November.

Of 2012.

Last year was basically the year of “oh crap what’s going to happen next?” And things got worse and worse and worse and now they’re getting progressively better, which is awesome, but we’re still not out of the financial hole getting evicted from your apartment and not paying bills for almost three months leaves you. Things were bad, yo.

Not only has it been a year and a half since we’ve seen Zach’s family (we’ve seen his mom once during that year), it’s been over a year since I’ve seen my older brother, my sister in law, and my two amazing and hilarious nephews who dwell in the land of tulips and wooden shoes. It sucks. Holland is really, really, far away.

So today I’m complaining because I miss my family. So I’m squishing Emery’s cheeks enough for everyone that has yet to meet him.  Because living far away from your family and being too broke to go see them is really sad. But Emery is delicious. 



Please tell me we’re not the only family separated by distance and finances. It’s hard, ya’ll.


  1. says

    We are in the same boat. Michael’s job brought us to Alabama and I love it here, but it puts me 14 hours away from my family in Pennsylvania. I haven’t been to PA in over a year and won’t get there again until Christmas. Maybe I’ll see my sister then if she can get home then, but I haven’t seen here we were home last. It’s hard. Thankfully my parents are flying here in July, but I haven’t seen them in almost a year either. Right now the goal is to see each other twice a year, once with my parents coming here and once with us going home, but flying gets expensive (we pretty much plan at least 6 months in advance so we can start saving for plane tickets) and we usually can’t get enough time off of work to drive (since we usually have to do it in 2 days). All that rambling to say, I feel your pain. Living away from your family stinks!
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  2. Aimee Richardson says

    My brother and his family was stationed in Colorado last yr. So i havent and wont get to see them often. It sux cuz they had only lived 4 hrs away. My dad and his family live in NC. I only recently started a relationship with him but its difficult to build that relationship with 17.5 hr driving trip between you.

  3. says

    Oh I know how you feel! We’re lucky and do live near my parents, and half of my husbands siblings. BUT my brother and his wife live in NH while we’re in Utah. It’s been over 2 years since we saw them last, and in that time they had another baby and so did I. This year we had saved enough to go visit…and then my husband lost his job :( I was mad, and angry that we couldn’t go….especially since my brother is moving to Belgium in July!!! My parents have been so sweet though, and paid for half a ticket for just me to go visit, and they’ll stay and help hubby with our 4 kids. I honestly tear up every time I think about the sacrifice they just made for me.
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  4. says

    We live on the east coast and my parents and family live in the West and on the west coast. It’s so hard. When I’m sick, I wish my mom was nearby to help lighten the load.

    One thing that has helped us a lot is Skype. We Skype almost daily with my mom. It makes me feel connected to her and she gets to see my 2.5 year old daughter grow up. It’s definitely not the same as being together in person, but it’s the next best thing.
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  5. Erica says

    You are not alone! I live in Illinois near my mom and my dad lives in Texas. We haven’t seen him since last summer and before that it was 2 years. My husband is also from Texas and its been even longer since we have seen them. It was easier before my oldest started grade school because we could fly during off seasons and my husband could go because he could take the time off work. Now trying to fly during holiday breaks is outrageous. If we drive my husband can’t go because by the time we get there we would have a day and have to come home. Our youngest is 8 months and still hasn’t met my husbands family or his Papa and Miemie. So lots of heart break here too when the kids ask me when they get to see Grandpa again. I would do anything to be able to see him (I am a daddy’s girl). Do you have Skype? That helps a little bit at least we get to see him and he gets to see my crazy trio live and not just in the pictures I send.

  6. Shannon Anderson says

    I live in Iowa, my mother lives in Oklahoma, 1 daughter lives in Nevada, and all the rest are in California and it sucks at times. My youngest daughter doesn’t know 90% of her family because I don’t have the money to go visiting and neither do they. I just keep thinking one day. Good luck.

  7. says

    I know the feeling. Aside from video chatting, I haven’t seen my sister and 7 year old niece in 4 years. She was deployed to Hawaii so the cost of going to visit was never in the budget. I missed her wedding (but got to see tons of pictures), haven’t met my brother in law or their now 1 year old daughter. They moved to Texas recently but even the cost of traveling there to visit ( or them visiting us since they are now a one income family) is tough.
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  8. Sarah says

    We’re 700 miles from my family and about 600 from my husband’s (other than my SIL who lives 40 min away but goes to the same church). Every time a holiday comes up I dread talking to my family because the inevitable guilt tripping begins. “Why can’t you just take a week to come out? Or just a few days? We haven’t seen you in months!”

    Um do the roads only go one way? NO! Not only that but my husband is a pastor so we can’t really miss too many Sundays, so that makes traveling even harder. Oh and did I mention that it costs 300-400 just in gas each time we go? We use to go 3-4 times a year, but that was before we had 2 kids and worked in the church. Oy. I love my family but I wish they would understand that we’re not coming because we don’t want to, we’re not coming because financially and time-wise we just can’t.

    Sorry for the rant, this is obviously a sore-point.

  9. says

    You’re definitely not alone. My mom and sisters are in Southern California, Northern California, and in Atlanta. My Mom’s side of the family lives in VA. We’re also trying to get out of a financial hole, so even though I would love to buy plane tickets all the time, we just can’t. And it sucks. By the time I see them again, it will have been more than a year. They were all here for my wedding last July, and now we’re gathering again for a wedding in VA. Luckily, it’s within driving distance so the trip is a little more manageable.

    Not seeing family definitely sucks though :(

  10. Abigail says

    We had to choose between Mississippi or Alaska. Jobwise we went with Alaska but boy do we miss our Mississippi family being farther away especially now that grandbaby number one (on both sides) is here! And now through a series of events it is now possible for our Mississippi family to move here to Alaska! Still . . .my sis and two brothers and their respective spouses are far away . . one being military . . .MISS. THEM!!

  11. says

    Right there with ya. We live in the Northwest. My parents and three of my sisters are spread in various cities across Florida and Alabama and the sister I am closest to lives in NYC. It sucks some days. Buying four cross-country plane tickets is NOT cheap. We use most of our tax return on plane tickets each thankful for that thing!
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  12. Michelle says

    Totally not alone. My inlaws live in Seattle while we live in Texas. They come see us about once a year fortunately and we skype a lot. My sister, her husband, and their precious children live in Equador… We really can’t afford that plane ticket much less the vacation time… I hate finances as a whole.

  13. Rachel Dallaire says

    We live in Portland, OR and our families live in Michigan. We’ve been here for four years. And we live paychek to paychek and play the “what bills get paid this month game” more often than we’d like. Sometimes it sucks so bad to be so far away. I seriously say “I want my mommy!” sometimes just because I miss them so badly. :-/ We’ve been back a couple times, but it’s so hard to not be able to get together more often than MAYBE once every year and a half (if that). We just have to remind ourselves that we are exactly where God wants us. We love it here-we just wish we could move our entire families out here nearby! Ha! :-)

  14. Nicole says

    Right here with you! We live in Buffalo, NY and my husband’s family is on LOng Island. It’s only an 8 hr drive or an hr flight but with 2 under 2, it’s impossible to get there as often as we would like. My family is scattered all over the country so they are even harder to see. It’s tough to see my kids grow up without family close by because we lived so close to family when I was little.

  15. says

    My family moved here from South America, so I hardly got to know my grandparents. My much older (+14 yrs) sister moved down under when I was a teenager. And the rest of my immediate family is spread along the east and west coast of the US. It’s definitely hard. But, it’s a lot easier than it was before the social internet!

  16. Sara says

    I definitely understand. We live by nearly all of my husband’s family here in Kentucky. But my mother and brother both live in Houston. We’re not financially able to fly and visit very often and can only drive down once a year if we’re lucky. Really sucks. Especially being a new mom (baby girl is 3 months). My mom wasn’t here for her birth and only got to stay a week because of my grandmother being ill and eventually passing away which shortened her time. My husband’s family is great, but sometimes (actually alot of the time) you just want your own family.

  17. says

    we live in riyadh, saudi arabia. all of my family is in southern missouri. right now, thank god, i get to see my mom every six months or so–we go to the states once a year, she comes to riyadh once a year. but i see my dad, my brother, my niece and nephew, my best friends, etc. only once a year, and that is really hard (and international plane tickets are crazy expensive). when my daughter (and our kids that will come later, god willing) is older, we hope that the kids and i will spend summers in missouri (with dad staying as long as he can), so that the kids can get a healthy dose of both of their parents’ cultures and languages. but for now, we’re mostly riyadh-based, and i miss my people every. single. day.
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  18. Amanda says

    No, you are not alone. I am fortunate enough to have both my parents relatively near us, but due to health issues and age we travel to them to help, care and provide them and our children the opportunity to build a love for one another as one day all too soon it will not be possible. The rest of our family is scattered throughout New York and Ireland (we are in Ontario Canada). A single income family keeps my husband away from us working about 65% of the year (yes I’ve sat and meticulously calculated on some of those lonely nights when sleep is futile because one if not both of the kids are up and down for a multitude of reasons). Income is low, expenses are high. Visiting and making travel plans, not an option. So continues the daily mind boggle of what can we do today that won’t cost us what we don’t have …. and hopefully hold mommy’s insanity at bay a little while longer.

  19. Carrie says

    I have a bunch of brothers and sisters and rarely get to see them. We do live near both of our parents, and my Hubby’s brothers live close, but in our case that’s NOT a good thing. (My hubby is the white sheep in a family of black sheep). Last Christmas was super hard for me. One of my brothers lives in Hawaii and another brother and family went to visit for Christmas, and a sister with her family, and my parents decided to go too. Not only did I not get to be with my family, I also didn’t get to go to Hawaii. That sucked. I really enjoyed Christmas with my hubby and boys, but it was still hard.

  20. says

    I’m a 39-yr-old (this month) mother to a 7 month old. I had resigned myself to the ‘fact’ that I would never have a baby… so had my family. Now, here I am, 750 miles away from all of my family and friends with a little miracle girl. Due to my work rules, I am not allowed to take vacation time until fall. So, my family won’t meet her until she’s turning a year old. “Yes Sweetie, this man is your grandpa. Here Dad, meet your one year old granddaughter.” *sigh* I HATE it!
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  21. Jenn Smith says

    We are military stationed in Japan and its been 2 years + since we have been able to see family and will be another 2 years before we return to the States. Sometimes I just cry I miss family so much but we simply cannot afford $1500 X 4 to get us all “home”

  22. says

    I’m just finding your blog and it seems like every single entry is hitting home with me. We moved from NC to TX to be close to my family a year ago. We lived with my parents for 8 months (which I would NOT recommend) while we built our house. It confused by 1 yr old daughter about our family dynamic and caused stress on my marriage. We moved 35 miles away in January days away from be giving birth to our son. And now it feels like we are starting over AGAIN. I feel bad that my husband doesn’t get to see his family that often and I sometimes think he regrets the decision we both made to be close to my family :-(
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  23. says

    SOOOO not alone. We live in PA. We have our dads close, but my mom is in Chicago and my husband’s is in FL. My sister is in MD. Love our dads but I never realized how much I miss our moms until I had a baby. I squish his face as much as possible on facetime or Skype…but it is NOT the same. Wish I could see the daily things with my nephew, too. You know, baseball games, school plays…. Distance is tough.
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  24. Gabi says

    It takes 37 hours to drive to where my parents are and about 18 to where my in-laws are. Luckily my in-laws come once a year to visit. My parents will not come, even though we have offered to buy plane tickets. We can’t afford to fly our family there, we have 5 children and driving would take at a minimum eight days round trip, not to mention we would actually want to spend some time with family and not just on the road. Anyway, yes, I feel the pain, I haven’t seen my mom in person in over three years. My youngest has never met them, she is two. It is awful. I have always been close with my family but now . . . I just pray.

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