For to be free is not to merely cast off one's chains,
but to live in a way that respects and enhances the freedom of others.
- Nelson Mandela -

Friday, June 13, 2008

Never say never...

I'm sorely tempted to change the name of this weblog back to Never a Dull Moment. Or I'll name it No Time to Blog. Yeah, that might be most appropriate.
I came back from Holland just before Myrna's birthday and we did manage to make it into a bit of a festive day, but to be fair it was nothing compared to the weeklong celebrations she usually likes to have. She was very understanding about it, and I know that's just how it was and all that, but still... I would have liked to make her passage into being a teenager a bit more special. But then again, we could do something special sometime in the summer, when hopefully things have quieted down a bit.

It's probably obvious that my sister is not doing very well. And unfortunately with the hospital system being what it is, I really have to stay on top of things to make sure she's alright and being looked after and cared for in a way that she is happy with. Anyway, hopefully she'll be moved to a convalescent home on Monday and I'll be able to sit back a bit.

My niece, in the meantime, has passed her exams with mainly top marks! I am so proud of her, she has worked really hard for it. And, bearing in mind that after I left she had to look after herself, the dog and the household all by herself, she did such a magnificent job. She has certainly grown up and found her feet, under extremely difficult circumstances!
There will be a ceremony for her receiving her diploma and I'll be going to Holland to attend, not only because my sister won't be able to go, but also because I myself want to be there for my clan-daughter. I've arranged it so that we arrive in Holland for my Mum's 77th birthday (yes, birthdays are a big thing in Holland!) and can go to the diploma ceremony a few days later.
I'm saying 'we', because this time I'm taking Myrna and Owen with me.
We haven't had a holiday for years and even though this isn't going to be a relax-and-only-do-things-you-really-want-to-do kind of holiday, I'm going to try and fit in a few visits to friends and family and to do some nostalgic outings.
With Myrna.
Because Owen is going to stay with his best friend for the whole time. He doesn't do travelling unless he really, really has to. And he only occasionally does the kind of visits Myrna and I plan to do quite a lot of.
Owen is looking forward to being with his life long friend and to do all the things they always used to do. And that includes climbing trees, digging holes, building tree huts, etcetera. Now that they're both sixteen I imagine Owen's friend would also like to do other, more 'grown-up' things... and Owen will go along with him.
This friend's family are very, very good friends of ours, too. The kind of friends where it doesn't really matter if you don't see each other, and sometimes don't even speak with each other for a long time, and then when you do meet or speak, you just pick it up again and carry on.
They've supported us from day one in our home educating adventure. Openly, hands on, fully.
They live in one of the most beautiful spots in Holland, on the embankments of the River Rhine, and they built their extremely eco-friendly house themselves. It's one of those very rare places in Holland where you don't have other people living close to you, with lots of nature, birds, animals and what have you around.
Owen has always felt very much at home and at ease there. In fact, when he was five years old and we were driving home after I'd picked him up, he said to me: "I don't understand why I wasn't born as M's child, because I really belong there."

This certainly inspired us to find a place with an equivalent amount of space and nature around us in this country.

Myrna is looking forward to seeing old friends, too. And to visit places we used to go to when she was little, such as the Open Air Museum and the National Park. She's also very keen to take her keyboard and guitar and sing and make music with lots of people.

A lot of my time will go to visiting my sister and making sure everything that needs to be organized and arranged is dealt with. And I am so looking forward to seeing her and being with her again. We're on the phone at least twice a day, and that's okay, but there's nothing like real life contact, where not everything has to be put into words.

In the meantime it's a busy time here, with me trying to get my work finished four weeks before the deadline to be able to go to Holland, preparations for Myrna's participation in the Lanercost Festival and other concerts, Owen's Duke of Edinburgh activities with the Cadets, AL trying to find a suitable FE course whilst working hard at the same time, and all the 'normal' day to day things in a HE household. On top of that the building of the extension has started. If everything goes according to plan - does it ever? - that'll be ready in about eight weeks time. Owen will move in there and that will make his room available for a foster child.

Aw heck, I'm going to say it again:
Never a Dull Moment!!

1 comment:

liz said...

Phew! You sound as busy as me at the moment. Hope we have time to catch up face to face soon. Enjoy your Hollnad visit if I don't see you before then:-)