AS I put the kids to bed tonight I whispered in their ears “Sleep tight, Mummy will be home in the morning”. Each laughed at me and said “But you are home!”. Yes, but tomorrow was the day I was meant to return home from my lengthy trip to the USA. It’s wonderful to be home but I can’t help feeling a little sad that I didn’t finish what I started out to do in the USA.
I’ve been home a week now. One minute I was eating dinner at a fabulous old-style Mexican restaurant in California, the next minute I had news that Paul’s Mum had been given hours to live after a brain haemorrhage. Within hours I was on a plane home, having had the news that she had passed away. Paul was having to deal with 3 grieving children alone, plus have to organise his Mum’s funeral alongside his sister. Those hours before deciding to leave California (and Prima were amazingly supportive in letting me go from my contracted teaching work) and then those hours spent making trying to sleep and make small talk on the plane were some of the loneliest and saddest I have ever felt. I thank goodness for great employers, fabulous friends and a wonderful family.
So a week on we have done some of the sad stuff – a funeral and then a burial up north. There is so much more to do though, and I had no idea just how heartbreaking some of the after-the-funeral stuff could be.
I’m also feeling sad about the USA. Months of work, and it really was months of work (on and off, obviously), that didn’t get completed. No closure. All the preparations for me to be away from home, the work that I put in during times I should have been relaxing with the kids. That is all sitting heavy with me. Regrets that I didn’t spend enough time with certain people in the USA – had I known I’d be plucked away so quickly I would have done things differently in the few days I was there. It’s all laying really heavily on me right now.
I love scrapbooking, or maybe I love storytelling. I haven’t figured out which right now. But sometimes. Just sometimes I wonder the value of what I do with the teaching and the travelling, the eventing and being out there in public. I can say in the hours that I wasn’t with them when they needed me most, that the distance apart from them was far too huge. The last week has been a massive thinking time for me.
For those of you at Art*Venture, I wish I could have been there. I hope you understood. I loved my projects dearly. It would have been fabulous to teach them in person. I have heard the event turned out to be something out of this world, I knew it would be.
I have lots of people to thank. People that sent flowers, texts, calls, emails, facebook messages, cards and best wishes. The friends that got me on the plane, Prima who encouraged me to be with my family, the whole Prima team that one by one each consoled me during the craziness of CHA. From the people I haven’t seen in years that turned up to the funeral, to the community of Mangakaramea that flew their town hall flag at half mast on the day we took Nannie North home to rest, to those that helped us drink to Nana North on Friday night, you were all part of making us feel better. Each and every one was appreciated and I can safely say that my faith in humanity has been restored. This is an amazing world we live in.
Abby and Nana North with some flowers picked from her garden, 2008.
Art*Venture project 1 – an altered from with removable layout using some of the newest Prima products. There was also a 2nd layout to go with this class.