I’ve been struggling to write this post for over a week now. It’s like I have all these noisy thoughts in my mind vying for my attention, and when I finally get a chance to sit down to put fingers to keyboard, my thoughts fall silent. They’re taunting me. I know it.
I guess I should start from the beginning.
One of my goals this year was to visit Japan since my Younger Sister is on exchange there at the moment. However, my family from the US have contacted my Dad to say that my Paternal Grandparents are slowly declining in health, and they would like to see my Dad one last time. After much consideration, I changed my travel plans for the year to accompany my Dad to the US. I originally thought my Mum would be going as well, but she didn’t want to. She said she didn’t like travelling by plane, but was apparently okay with going to Japan by plane. Maybe I’m being too overly suspicious, but I think there could be some family history there. So, she’s not going and now I have to deal with the guilt of leaving her home alone for two weeks. Also, dealing with the frustration of not knowing why she won’t come with us.
Anyway, I thought my Dad and I would be going towards the end of June, but we received news my Paternal Grandpa is in ICU with a lung infection that won’t go away. Plans changed again. And now we’re flying out in two days.
I’m not sure how I feel about all this at present. I only got confirmation of this three days ago. I am thankful that my Supervisor and Managers are understanding and have allowed me to take leave on such short notice (especially since I’ve only been working for them for five months). I’m also thankful my colleagues are willing to do a few things for me while I’m away. I’m hoping I did enough with my caseload handover. And I’m hoping that nothing blows up while I’m away. I went to sleep last night thinking of all the little things I didn’t get around to doing. But sometimes, you just have to remind yourself that you can only do so much. And that’s a life lesson which is hard for me to accept. Always.
Surprisingly, it’s been easy for me to accept that life doesn’t always go according to plan. I guess it’s because that gets proven time and time again. My life is definitely not how I would have planned it. And not necessarily in terms of being disappointed that things didn’t work out, but also in terms of being amazed that things turned out better than expected.
Honestly, I was preparing to pack funeral-appropriate attire for my trip (and I probably still will). I had my leave authorised and tickets booked, but no news about my Paternal Grandpa. No news is good news, as they say, and he is still alive although unwell. I’m also not sure what I was expecting to do while I was visiting relatives, but I didn’t imagine doing holiday things, if you know what I mean. After all, the purpose was to see my Paternal Grandparents one last time. I guess I thought we’d be at the hospital for the majority of the time. I’m surprised and grateful that an Uncle has roughly sketched out an itinerary that includes some sight-seeing.
So while I’m a bit more upbeat about this impending last-minute trip overseas, I’m still cautious about it all. I don’t want to be all doom and gloom about it. I really want to have a good time. But I’m very aware of the fact that I’m only going because my Paternal Grandparents (who I haven’t seen in over a decade) are getting older and may not be on this Earth for much longer. I’m confused about how excited I should be. Also, I’m meeting my relatives for the first time who are practically strangers to me. I should know who they are, but I don’t.
The next two weeks are going to be interesting at the very least. I didn’t plan on sitting next to my Dad on a plane bound for the US in two days. But it’s happening. I still can’t believe it. And it probably won’t hit me until I land (most likely after I’ve recovered from jet lag).