Just over 10 years ago, between Christmas and New Years Eve, I packed my stuff and drove away from France to settle down in Germany. The "quatsch", literally "verbal nonsense" in German, certainly didn't start then, but that's the time when rebooted my blog and renamed it "Auswanderer Quatsch" (and later "Auswanderer Quatsch²"), "expatriate verbal nonsense".
So much has happened in the last 10 years, on top of which getting happily married to a wonderful wife and having two extraordinary children. I am particularly proud that my 4 years old son enjoys speaking french with me. It was not easy, but oh so rewarding to see this heritage continue even though I embraced another language for my day-to-day life. I am also very happy I managed to build and nourish a relationship between my parents & sisters and our little family, regardless of the distance and culture differences.
Personally, I first and foremost went from zero to... being able to trick people into believing I may be a German native speaker over short conversations. I started a career as a software developer and slowly moved toward coaching. I worked for four companies and many more projects. In the company I have been working for since 2011, I took part to important decisions, tried to become a mindfulness, career and improvement drive for my colleagues and am still working toward finding/building my place in the company as a "people dude". I built deep friendships and extraordinary professional relationships in Nuremberg and across Germany. I somehow managed to keep some ties to my friends in France too, but to be honest, this has been hardest to maintain. I managed to become a recurring speaker at multiple German IT conferences and got to influence many people over the years. In the last few years, I developed deep mentoring ties both as a mentor and a mentee. This has been like a new gear to my personal growth.
This has been the hell of a decade with countless nights working on my side activities, juggling with my professional life on one side, and the even more important one as a boyfriend, then husband and father. Mlle V. thank you, you are making it possible every day!
I am forgetting many, many things in there, and silencing a lot more that I want to keep to myself. One that I cannot forget is all the internet friends and contacts I got in this time frame. My "Auswanderer Quatsch" would only be half as fun without your regular feedback, comments and ideas.
I don't know you, but I am very curious to see what the next decade has in its sleeves for us/me!
Image Source: Snowman Poop Cake by Christi (CC BY-NC-ND 2.0)