I’ve been thinking a lot lately on the idea of comfort. In the past month, I have moved from Texas, where I spent 24.5 glorious years, to a small town in the alps of southern Germany. Not only am I in a new country with a new language, but this Texas girl that is used to 300 days a year of sunshine and warmth is living in cold, snowy weather. For example, the other night I rode my bike home from a babysitting job. It was dark outside, 19 degrees (F), with snow and ice on the ground, light flurries coming down and I was freezing. I’ve never missed my 4Runner so much in my life. Talk about being out of my comfort zone. Life here is so different. 

I miss Tex- Mex. I miss Chick- Fil-A. I miss Dr Pepper and garbage disposals (do y’all say Dispos-ELS or Dispos-ALS.. I say the latter and it always seems to cause an argument), I miss stores and restaurants staying open later and being open on Sundays! I miss my friends and family, and being around people that truly know me well. I miss free and easy access to websites like Pandora, Netflix and (I just want to be able to catch up on the Bachelor without spending a million dollars)! And boy do I miss my car. My precious 4Runner.

But as I think on the things I am missing, I realized that those are things that made my life easier, more enjoyable… comfortable. And I don’t believe we are called to be comfortable. Being comfortable means we are doing something wrong. We aren’t taking risks or trying new things or meeting new people. If we are perfectly comfortable in our lives, we aren’t truly living. We need to step out of that comfort zone and explore the world and other cultures, meet people that are different than us, take chances… and no, I don’t mean everyone should sell their possessions and move to another country like I did, but I do think we need to step out of our bubbles more often. Maybe it means picking up a new hobby that is a challenge for you, or volunteering somewhere in your city.

Yes, I miss my favorite things often. Gosh do I miss Chick- Fil- A and Tex-Mex.. I don’t know which I miss more. Probably Chick- Fil- A because I can’t get anything even close to it here, whereas I can at least whip up my own guacamole or tacos if I wanted to. Sometimes I just want life to be easy and to have what I want at my fingertips (first world problems), but then I remember all of the new things I enjoy about my life here in Germany. I love hearing the church bells in town ring every day. I love how peaceful everything looks with a thick layer of snow covering it. I love the towel warmers in the bathrooms. I love how easy public transportation is to use between towns, cities and countries. I love my new friends I’ve made and the family I live with. I love the church I’ve found. I love the backdrop of the mountains.

While I might not always be comfortable, I am learning and growing in a new culture, new country and new language. God is working in me and teaching me more about myself every day. and I love it.

How are you going to step out of your comfort zone this year?



18 responses to “Comfort

  1. You made me think about myself when I moved from sunny and warm Puerto Rico to New York City but of course on a much smaller scale and for different reasons but the feelings are similar. I even missed certain smells and sounds. Realistically most people like being in their comfort zone and specially as you get older change becomes too challenging, This experience is the beginning of great things for you so enjoy, learn and keep doing what feels right!! In the meantime ill see if there’s any way I can send you a chick fill A care package 🙂 Big Hug

  2. I love this post. I can totally relate- after 4 year of living in the city I still miss the ease of a car. But you’re so right, it’s the new comforts that make it exciting.
    Can’t wait to hear more about your adventures.
    Lots of love your way.

  3. Boo, you are so right and glad you see these things at your age. You sure know how to make a Dad feel like they did a good job. Keep moving onward and upward. Love you, Dad.

  4. I can relate about the temperatures; I’m from Florida. When I moved here, I had no idea what a “winter” is like. LOL.

    A lot of the things you miss can be found here, once you’ve figured out the lay of the land. For example, Mountain Dew isn’t that common here, but if I really have a craving, the Pronto in the Bahnhof has both Dew and Dr. Pepper.

    As for Chick-Fil-A, I haven’t found anything quite like their chicken sandwiches, but their waffle fries I’ve got covered. Kullmans Diner is an “American Style Diner” that has crosscut fries that are just as good. They have four locations in Germany, and one of ’em is here in Regensburg. If you keep looking, I bet you’ll find something similar close to you.

    Whenever someone asks me what I miss the most living over here, my answer is always Tater Tots. That’s one thing I haven’t found a proper replacement for. I’ve tried Rosti, Croquettes, Hash Browns, and other potato concoctions, and nothing is quite like Tots.

    Oh, and regarding your comments about Pandora, Netflix, and Hulu- the post I’m writing to go up on my blog on Monday morning will have some tips for that…

    Oh, and as for the Sundays with everything closed- you get used to it. I hated it at first, but I’ve come to appreciate the weekly forced pause in my hectic life. Maybe you’ll find a similar peace with it after a while.

  5. Great post Hailey! I was feeling the same way you are feeling when I first moved to Germany… no shopping on Sundays, no fast food options, the cold weather, and the cold people… but, Steven is right, the longer you live here, the more you get used to it… to be honest, we don’t do that much shopping anymore, we are spending most of our weekends traveling, so that doesn’t bother us too much anymore… and since moving to Germany, we’ve completely cut out fast food! The restaurants here serve fresh, whole foods that I crave now more than a greasy hamburger or dare I say, Chick- Fil- A {unintentional, but that totally rhymes}! Moving from the south myself, I am a sun loving beach bum, but now I feel blessed to be able to enjoy all four seasons! Sure the sun doesn’t shine for 2 or 3 months, but I’ve learned to refocus my efforts & interests… instead of spending my time outdoors, I harness my focus to improving and growing my business {it could be anything… a hobby perhaps} during these colder months, so that the rest of the year, I can put that on the back burner… instead of trips to Lake Constance or the Weinstrasse, we travel to the mountains and places like Garmisch 🙂 that can be enjoyed year round.

    I promise that if you hang in there, you will learn to adjust… and there’s something about living here that has made us stop to enjoy life a little more… the festivals, the Christmas markets, the food, the wine {and wine hikes}… maybe, like you said, it is the fact that we are getting out of our comfort zone in order to take advantage of this great opportunity we’ve been blessed with. I want to leave with no regrets… or not leave at all! As Americans, we get complacent in our lives… wake up for work, go to work, come home from work, got to bed, repeat. We’ve come to learn that the Germans really do know how to enjoy life!

    • Thanks Ashley! Its great to know I’m not the only one who has felt this way. I know it’s a great change for me- but it’s still an adjustment! But boy am I definitely eating healthier without so much fast food/junk food in my life! I’m looking forward to enjoying life like the Germans do 🙂 Great advice!

  6. How refreshing to hear so much positive advice! Adjustments aren’t always easy, that’s why they call them adjustments, but keeping a positive attitude will definitely make it easier. I remember when stores used to be closed on Sundays in Texas. We didn’t know any better at the time, because it had always been that way, but it was always a nice day for rest, reading, being outside and enjoy simple things. You’ll get used to it too and will miss it when you land back in the states. And yay, the possibility of finding an occasional dr pepper, life is good! Hang in there Hailz, you always make the best of everything! Hugs and kisses and I love you misses! 🙂

  7. I have a similar list. I think we all do. The adjustment isn’t as easy as some would think. We are creatures of habit and like our “comforts”. This year I missed the “After Christmas sales”…I never usually hit them anyway but the fact that I couldn’t hit them even if I wanted to bothered me. Yesterday I was really missing roads with shoulders….silly, I know but I hate the way the roads are with no room for error. Lastly…I’m totally with you on the sun!! I miss the sun!! Nobody told me it was so rainy and cloudy here. I knew England was rainy but Germany?? I had no idea. Hang in there…the spring makes the long winter worth it….the flowers are amazing 😀

    God Bless Texas!

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