That got me thinking.
Kate has lived in Chicago for a few years now and has suggested I visit on more than one occasion, but I have always brushed it off assuming it was not really do-able for many reasons. When she got specific, a little 'why not' thought entered my head. Kate's question coincided with a friend of mine getting told her cancer can't be cured- so I was in a bit of a different 'head space' and willing to entertain possibilities that I hadn't before. When confronted with the possibility of the death of a friend (who is going okay, I should mention) the question of 'what is important' comes up regularly.
My family is really important to me (for some lovely reading about family read Kate's blog post). Why would I leave them to go half way round the world?
That has been the question that's been really hard to answer in the the decision process- amongst many others- hmm, do you get the sense I am not a swift decision maker? Well. I have been too-ing and fro-ing since Kate asked me and guess what- I have decided to go. As I was thinking about it I got offered an extra day a week work for 12 weeks, so that will pay for my ticket so that's the financial bit largely sorted.
But, oh, the questions raised- besides the 'should I be contributing to polluting the world by participating in the airline industry' ethical ones, the personal ones.
Do I 'deserve' this? Would this mean I am a 'bad mother'? Should I feel guilty? And all of that marlarky- not all of it helpful but really interesting to see what feelings and thoughts it has bought up for me.
Gee, and guess what I have remembered? I like travelling, I like planes, I love my friend Kate (not that I had forgotten that Kate!) and I can't wait to visit her and her family and I will also get to visit my cousin (in law) Natasha who has promised to take me to her 'locals' (fabric stores of course, not pubs- priorites!). I am enjoying thinking about my trip and planning it. Dare I say, getting a tad excited! It's a shift in thinking for me- rather than thinking about myself in terms of my home roles or work roles (which I pride myself on) I am thinking about just, well, me. Slightly uncomfortable because I am possibly not used to putting my needs and wants high on the priority list. But, I am really looking forward to remembering that, hey, I can negotiate an international airport- I do have skills other than those that have been regularly practiced over the past 10 years.
And my family? They will be alright. I am vey lucky that Mr. Apple works on the farm so he often walks down to the bus stop with the children and gets them aften school- gosh, he's the preferred parent for afternoon tea preparation because he makes the best milkshakes. So the day to day running of the place wont change that much. I will really miss them and they will miss me, but we'll all be okay. They will become abit more resilient, I will become abit less of a control freak (!) and hopefully we'll all be the richer for it upon my return.