Moving Abroad After 30 With Kids: Don't Let Fear Stop You from Moving Abroad

I wasn’t sure if I should move abroad or not.

Sleepless nights, tossing and turning with the yearning in my heart but the fear in my brain, imagining one thousand possible scenarios of how things could turn out if I decided to leave my home country and move abroad. Nothing would mitigate the feeling i had of being torn between fear and hope.

I just had to take the leap of faith and be brave enough to see how things go.

Photo by  Blake Barlow

Photo by Blake Barlow

What made me want to move abroad?

Nothing and everything really. My life was great and I was happy where I was. There were some pros on the list: I had family living in my dream destination (Spain), but also major cons: I had family living in Argentina, my home country. We also had everything figured out, our house, our car, our jobs, my kid’s school. Everything. But there was still something lingering in the air, this je ne sais quoi, this “what if” that creeped into my mind every day. Then, BOOM, opportunity knocked. I knew that I had to make the change, and move to another country.

There were many reasons to fear change but there were even more reasons to crave it.

With moving abroad, comes uncertainty and doubts

Be careful what you wish for, you may receive it (W. W. Jacobs)

So, there we were, my husband and I (he deserves an award for best partner in crime) not even sure if we wanted to see what was behind the door. Moving abroad can be scary.

I guess taking a leap of faith meant answering the door to a complete stranger offering us what was our ticket to a new adventure. Are you for real? If we needed a sign, this was a huge one. But the fear, oh so much fear… Changing schools, finding new jobs in a new country, finding a new home, leaving family behind, am I ever going to make new friends?

But there we were, as hopeful and optimistic as little kids, that’s just the way we are.

There were many reasons to fear change but there were even more reasons to crave it. We would always fantasize about living somewhere near the beach, with a laid back attitude like the kind of people who live next to the sea have. Great food (patatas bravas and paella just to name a few), a first-world country, and a new and exciting adventure. After all, who says that after 30 with two kids you can´t live new and exciting experiences? Anyone can move abroad after 30!

The key to moving abroad: No expectations, no disappointments

Nothing really to expect but a very cool experience. We were not brave enough to think about it as an uprooting, no way, if we had thought of that, we would had never been able to make the first move. Labelling it as an “experience” made it more approachable and gave it a light feeling.

Then, it came the time when we started telling friends and family. That was the hardest part. My friends started commending me on how brave we were, especially moving abroad with a three year old and a four month old baby. I did not get what the big deal was, or at least I did not until I was waiting for my brother in law to take us to the airport.

Then came the moment when I thought: what the heck am I doing??

I was leaving my home, my friends, my family, all of my possessions, my mind too maybe? But we were now at the point of no return.

We did it! We didn’t let fear stop us from moving to a new country!

Here we are, in the beautiful city of Valencia. Sunny days, wonderful weather, laid back people, delicious food and a loving family. So far, we have a new house, a new school and we are working our way to have everything else sorted out. It is possible to move abroad after 30. It is possible to move abroad with a family. If you allow fear to stop you, you’ll be robbing yourself and your family of potentially life-changing experiences.

We are loving this city’s pace, how contradictory modern and old it is, all at the same time, how warm people are and still having that wonderful sense of hope that we can make it happen.

Change is never easy, and I hope everything turns out ok, and if not… quién me quita lo bailao! (no regrets!)


Gisele is starting her adventure as a Valenciana, enjoying patatas bravas, tostadas con tomate and olivas and discovering with much amusement this “no pasa nada!” lifestyle. Recently arrived in Spain from Argentina, discovering places, people and food, trying to set up a new life for her family in this wonderful place.