At the very start of this trip I made myself clear to Craig. I said we are only going for SIX months. Not a day more. This is just a holiday and we are definitely going home at the end of it.
But a girl can change her mind, right?
So six months down the track I found myself saying to him 'lets keep going'. Please lets not go back to Perth right now. Lets go back north and stay in Broome for a while. And do the top end again.
Our hearts told us to keep exploring this beautiful country of ours. To be like so many others we had seen and to keep going. To stop and work a few months here and there. To live the simplistic life of no bills, no responsibilities. Staying where we like when we like for how long we like.
But our heads told us 'go home'. Go back to work, go back to school, go back to family, get your shit sorted. Its not fair on the kids to live in this limbo land of doing what we please. They need routine and structure. The six months is up.
Our heads won.
Our last morning pack up was rather surreal. All the 'lasts'. The last time I closed the kitchen, the last time we packed up the stretcher beds, the last time we did up the canvas cover...
|Just about all packed up on our last morning|
I reversed onto the camper and Craig connected up. Then we made our way the 9 hours from Leonora, through to Perth. Home.
As the roads and the landmarks got more and more familiar I felt a strange feeling. Similar to the feeling I had when we left Perth for the first time those six months prior. Its hard to describe but it is sort of a nervous/anxious feeling. When we left it was nervous/anxious/excited. But on our return it was a nervous/anxious/deflated feeling.
Time had just gone so fast and it was all over. So final. We pulled up in our driveway, reversed the camper into the yard and headed over to my mums house just in time for a cooked dinner. Ahh I had missed my Mum! We were so tired having done three consecutive massive driving days. We had red dirt all over us and we were wrecked. All five of us were emotionally drained. We ate a quick dinner before coming 'home' and sleeping as a family on the lounge room floor on our camper beds. It was just too much to go off into our own rooms after sleeping together so long!
As most of you know, we had two houses before we left on our trip, and to help fund our travels we sold our family home. Our other property is rented out for 12 months and is too far away from the kids school. Therefore we had organised ourselves (over the phone when we were in South Australia) a rental property in our home suburb which is close to school, shops and my family.
The next few days were a blur of collecting our furniture from the sea containers stored at a friends property and my parents house. Unpacking boxes and getting back to 'normal'. Getting our dog back.
The principal at school said to bring the kids back for the few days before term ended so they could re acquaint themselves. So all too soon the kids disappeared to school, Craig went back to work and I was left in this huge house unpacking. Stuff. Stuff that had been so important to me before we left. But stuff that seemed so insignificant now.
I had a few cries during this time. I thought Craig would be the one who was depressed to be home. But it was actually me that didn't cope so well!
On day five of being home everyone else was at school/work and I had to go couch shopping as we had sold our couch before we left. It was during this shopping experience that I sat in a big leather arm chair in Hervey Norman and sobbed like a baby. It was then I realised that I needed to get over it.
I got a subway for lunch and re grouped. Telling myself that I was bloody lucky to have done such a big holiday. It was over now. This was my life again. And I have a good life. One that I am lucky to come home to.
It was only ever a holiday. Nothing lasts forever.