Eve Eve Eve
In our family, we count down to special events in Big Sleeps. 141 Big Sleeps, 40 Big Sleeps, and now we are down to 3 Big Sleeps. It’s Aussie Eve Eve Eve, people.
In 3 Big Sleeps NanaRoz, Maren, Greta and I leave to see Nana’s side of the family, all of whom live in Australia. Mom (Roz) was an exchange student in high school where she was placed at my Dad’s high school in suburban Cleveland, Ohio.
By the way– can you imagine getting your placement envelope? She’s coming all the way from small-town Australia, and gets to go to (drumroll….)
Los Angeles, Chicago, New York, Cleveland.
Lucky for us, it worked out for the best. Mom and Dad got married in Australia five years after they met during her exchange, and then promptly moved to the U.S. to start their life together.
I always knew that my parents had a wonderfully romantic love story, and that always made me happy.
We’ve always had a strong connection to the Australian Mob; we make the most of our across-the-pond visits. All of them have been here at some point or another, and I’ve been blessed to travel there quite a bit. My mom’s favorite saying is “It’s only miles between us, nothing else.” We’ll be visiting with my grandmother (Ma), my four sets of aunts and uncles, and my eight cousins.
This will be our trip to celebrate five-years-worth of birthdays, Christmas’s, school holidays, picnics and vacations. This is our post-cancer WOOO HOOO trip. We have one month to cram in as much as fun and celebrations as possible. The most important thing about the trip is seeing our people. Lucky for us, an added bonus is that this whole side of the family lives in actual paradise. Colorful lorikeets (think parrot, but smaller and cuter) are all over one family’s tree, kangaroos are frequently spotted bounding through another family’s property, and there are adventures and experiences awaiting us that are uniquely Australian and amazing memory-makers in their own right. I am so excited to see my girls experience the country and people I know and love so much. It is so important to me that my girls get to know their Australian family, and I feel so blessed that Brad is so supportive. Brad came with me on a trip in 2005, and we vow that he will go again when we go back when the girls are older.
Now that it is only 3 big sleeps away, I have a lot to do. I am a packing goddess. I’ve managed to pack a month’s worth of necessities for M, G and I into one medium-large suitcase and one small suitcase. My carry on bags are crammed full of entertainment for Maren and Greta–which is necessary given that we’re traveling for a full twenty-four hours to get there, with the longest single flight lasting seventeen hours.
I was feeling pretty great about my packing skills until I collected Greta’s ancillary equipment. (She’s two.) For her, we need a pack n play, stroller, and carseat. She is the weakest link, for sure! We’re trying to whittle it down so we don’t have to strap
Maren and Greta some stuff on the roof of the car when we get there.
I’m typing this from the Chemo Room. I’m getting a big dose of my cancer-fighting medicine, another trip-preparation step. Instead of my usual one-week dose, Dr. Wonderful agreed to give me a bigger dose to last me the duration of my trip. After the trip, I’ll go back to weekly visits to the oncology office. One of the many things I love about Dr. Wonderful is that he is very cognizant of the fact that we do all of the cancer-fighting and treatment so that we can live our lives. Whenever possible, Dr. Wonderful works treatment around the life-living going on. I love that about him.
Mom and I will both be blogging along the way, and I will probably ramp up my Facebook usage from almost-never to at least daily so that we can check in with Brad and our people back home.
Thanks for your prayers: this trip is possible because mom and I are both cancer free. I am humbled in the face of my blessings.