My parents left on Wednesday. During the 3 years we have lived here this was their fourth visit. This was easily the hardest goodbye. As we become more established in New Zealand I realise the possibility of us moving back to the UK fades and their visits become more and more bittersweet. I enjoy their company intensely whilst being stingingly aware of its fleeting nature. During the last two weeks of my parents' trip here I started to get anxious. The goodbye loomed and I dreaded the cold, grey smoke which I knew would hiss into my chest and expand it with loneliness.
Wednesday morning and we kissed and cuddled at the airport. Teary and sad I didn't watch their plane depart as I normally would but turned and walked out.
My loving parents are generous enough to come over often and visit us in our home where I live with my healthy husband and children. Getting blue and upset because I miss them seems like navel gazing self indulgence when you consider what so many others are facing in Christchurch and Japan as they try and cope with the new face of their lives and future.
With that in mind I have opted for a smile every time I think of my ma and pa and feeling lucky for all our time we have together. Because they live so far away, when they come to stay we never while away our time with the daily communication of chores and time passers but instead really relish our time together. We have done nothing more adventurous than build sandcastles, swim in the pool, eat ice cream and read stories, all within a 2km radius but it has been glorious.
lovely pic taken by Quinn O'Connell Photography