I have been dreaming of a high powered blender for years. Grinding meats, perfecting green smoothies, and making instant ice cream are just a few of this beautiful appliance’s promises. While on home assignment I knew I wanted a high powered professional blender to be my “big” purchase. My Christmas present. I did my research and settled on a Blendtec with the beautiful Wildside Jar. (Yes, that’s a real thing). My wonderful hubby hustled a friend who has a Sam’s club membership, and a week after Christmas it was delivered to our stateside home. I gushed with excitement, and purchased a footlocker that was tall enough to pack it. Pack it, I indeed did; and then I lugged it over the water.
The first few days were bliss. Watermelon lime slushies for everybody. Who wants a smoothie? You get a smoothie. You get a smoothie. Everyone gets a smoothie! I’m the Oprah of cool delicious drinks.
Then the real test. I purchase two kilos of meat to grind and pull out spices to make homemade breakfast sausage. I watch a YouTube video and set my hands to the task. But no grinded meats for me. Just a whole lot of cubed meat swirling followed by auto shut-off. Swirling and auto shut-off. Grrr.
To make a long technical story short, I’ll just say, it won’t work. No transformer will help. Can’t work. Nope. Sorry, Charlie. No awesome powered professional blender for you. I even emailed the company and got this response:
Lovely. Of course the dealer will be happy to sell it to me. It costs $1000.
But it’s just a blender right?
Wrong. You are so wrong.
I can’t explain why I took the news so hard, or why I still think about this dumb blender more than any human being should ever think of an appliance. Maybe it’s my history of displacing emotions. Like when my Grandmother died very unexpectedly, and I took the news very well. Too well, actually. I got a haircut a few weeks later. My kids still bring up the time Mommy got a haircut and cried for days. Days, people. Hair. My hair fiasco got me thinking about this blender problem. (I don’t know how; that is just how my mind works). What else is going on in my life?
Transition back to Southeast Asia has been smooth. At least I think it has been until I really start meditating on it. The rat. The days without water. The 5 month old baby who won’t gain weight. The strep throat outbreak. Heat. Being told how fat I am by EVERY lady I reconnect with. The large ugly argument I had with my husband. Organizational changes resulting in almost all our leadership changing and good friends relaunching back to the U.S.
Somehow, I’m not thinking about those serious things regularly. I’m thinking about this blender.
Seven years living overseas has taught me not to set my heart on temporal things. That a lot of times, expectations lead to disappointments. There are always going to be power outages, usually right before you have a large group of people over. People come and go. Sometimes you are those people. Western food never tastes western until you are halfway through your term. Change is inevitable. Difficulties are unavoidable.
But I had exuberantly high expectations for this appliance. This American appliance. America in my mind is pretty perfect when it comes to figuring out how to run a home with as little elbow grease as possible. America rarely lets me down. (Except when Donald Trump is a frontrunner candidate for President, but this isn’t a blog that really discusses that. I’ll move on.) I really thought this blender was going to make life easier for me. A fool proof plan for green smoothies. Gone are the days of grinding my meat at the market by a person who never cleans their equipment. Expectations. Dashed.
Disappointment can be brutal. It can clog up your mind and change your focus from the important to the vain. It can be easier to focus on the small dissappointments (i.e. blenders) rather than deal with the big issues. But the big issues won’t go away. I can’t confuse my heart into joy by displacing my emotions. I have to face them. Process them in a healthy way. Talk about them. Write about them. Pray about them. Mourn them, when appropriate. Then maybe, just maybe, I can let go of this dumb blender thing.
How do you process disappointments and expat issues? Are you an ‘easily deals with emotions’ person? Do you stuff emotions deep down? Or are you a displacer like me? Let’s have a discussion in the comments.