I’m Claire Hauxwell – a forty-something wife, mom of two tween girls (send help, please), dog owner, friend and global nomad who is not afraid to show the real side of expat life. In 2009, my husband and I took a leap of faith and moved abroad for a two-year assignment to further his career. Over a decade later we are on our fifth expat assignment.
A lot of people try to classify me as a trailing spouse. Let’s not go there. I’ll let you in on a little secret… I have never trailed anyone (except for maybe that cute boy I had a major crush on in high school). So, please do me a favor and erase that term from your vocabulary and replace it with ASS – Accompanying Supportive Spouse. I’d much rather be known as an ASS; a #badASS is even better.
I’ve lived on three continents, in four countries and five different cities (Geneva, Brussels, Mexico City, Johannesburg and Zug). I am not going to lie; it’s been a lot of work. I have had my fair share of days when I was ready to pack my shit into a container and head home (not that I exactly know where home is anymore). Expat life isn’t for sissies and it isn’t easy.
My Theory On Blooming is about being real. I’m not afraid to discuss things that might be touchy or emotionally scary. I attempt to normalize the crazy lifestyle that expats consciously decide to take on and try to help non-expats realize we don’t always live the glamorous life they believe to be true from Facebook and Instagram posts. Yes, some expats have drivers and housekeepers, but some of us clean our own damn toilets too.
I’m going to swear, and my words won’t be sugar-coated. I am here to share my personal views and experiences. I’m not a psychologist, a coach or a researcher, nor do I ever claim to be any of those. But I do know what it feels like to be lonely in a foreign country when all you want is a jar of creamy god damn peanut butter, but you are living in a place that only sells disgusting crunchy (cue Alanis Morrissette… It’s like raaaiiinnn…).
You don’t have to agree with me, though I do hope you can be a kind human being who is capable of respecting a differing opinion. Also, please know this is a no judgement zone. Keep that shit away from here. I am perfectly imperfect and content. It took me a lot of work to be happy about that, and I don’t need any perfectionists trying to make me be a better anything.
I am open to discussion, and I genuinely hope you will engage in conversation about the topics I discuss. I would love to hear what you want to know more about too. I encourage you to join me on my continuing journey of being a badASS abroad. I promise it will be like talking to a friend – funny, vulnerable and totally relatable.
Grab a drink and let’s get talking.