Saturday, March 15, 2008

Goodbyes Are NEVER Easy...

How quickly life can change in a heartbeat...

A few hours after I blogged last night, Nick got word that his father had taken a turn for the worse and was slipping away, so instead of going to bed, we headed downstairs to the computer, booked a flight for him, packed, made some calls and got him out on the 6 am flight this morning for a 17 hour trip from Moncton, New Brunswick to Whitehorse, Yukon.

If there were a longer route to get from point A to point B in our country, I’d be surprised. Nick went Moncton to Toronto, Toronto to Vancouver on the other coast of our country and then Vancouver up north to Whitehorse. Find them on a map and you’ll see just how far he had to race to get to his Dad’s side.

Sadly, he didn’t make it in time.

As I write this, Nick is somewhere in the air between Vancouver and Whitehorse. He woke with a start from a power snooze on the second leg of the flight somehow knowing that it was too late. He called me from Vancouver once he landed to touch base and I had to let him know that he was right.

Luckily, Nick was able to speak to his father late last night before he left and tell him that he loved him and that he was on his way. There are many who don’t get that chance to say goodbye in time.

My girls have cried themselves out as you do with that first huge loss of someone you love in your life. I have spent the day trying to be strong for them, holding down the fort and just aching for Nick and the loss he is facing... but he is where he needs to be right now. He will be able to help his stepmother through the next few difficult days once he arrives tonight.

Luckily, both my girls were able to have fond memories of Ken and Colleen’s visit here for Thanksgiving in 2006 when his health was already starting to fail. Did it hurt more because they got to know him despite the distance or will the memories comfort them? Despite the pain that they are feeling now, I know that they will carry the good forward with them. How can it be a bad thing to know that you were loved?

I worry that Nick’s shoulders, who are always so strong for others, are still recovering. I hope that somehow he can find moments to rest amid this new round of chaos and that from this sadness, some healing will come as he pays his final respects to his Dad.

I called mine tonight to remind him of how much I love him.

Luckily, Ken is no longer in pain.

Never forget to say those “I love yous” as often as possible. We don’t always get to plan when we have to say goodbye.

Goodbye Ken.

Friday, March 14, 2008

Back From March Break!

We’ve been home a week from a fabulous (if somewhat slower paced) trip to London, England for Spring Break. Now that the snowstorms, jet lag, time change and laundry are done, I can finally get caught up on e-mail, blogging and other fun news!

The proofs for Owen & The Dinosaur looked great. The author and I poured over them and signed off on everything (with a few corrections or spots to watch out for) and so now I just have to sit back and let them print the copies! We’ve set the date of the book launch here in Moncton for April 12th at the Magnetic Hill Zoo from 1 to 3 pm. Like many zoos around the world, they are celebrating 2008 as the year of the frog to bring attention to water quality and other threats to habitats. Since dinosaurs did end up extinct and frogs are about as close as we could come since none of our museums in the city have much in the way of fossils, we decided this was the closest fit. One dollar from every book sold during the launch will be donated to this cause at the zoo!

I managed to get the website updated today as well to include the calorie-free Easter treat that I’d been promising. I had such fun doodling little dragonlets with bunny ears that I even have next year’s planned already. Actually, next year’s may involve a contest as well and I will post the chart earlier. If you wander over to our web site’s newsletter right now, you’ll be able to get your claws on the 2008 Easter Dragonlet and stitch it up before next weekend. I know you... you stitchers are FAST... MUCH faster than this dragon!

Tomorrow is the last session of swimming lessons for the girls which is good because Erin’s volleyball is switching into high gear. I think we have tournaments almost every other weekend until the Nationals/Easterns are held here in May. I foresee a lot of stitching and knitting on the sidelines!