A little over a week ago, I found myself wandering through Chatswood Chase on my own. I'd just dropped Skip off at the airport so he could fly back to Dubai for work and I needed to exchange a Christmas gift we'd bought one of the girls. Feeling sad - at Skip leaving, the holiday being almost over, processing all the events of the past couple of weeks - I wandered aimlessly.
Soon I found myself at Coles staring at a sign promoting a punnet of raspberries for $3.99 and I promptly burst into tears. Sobbing at Chatswood Chase Coles, early on a Friday morning. Pathetic really. I didn't really quite know why I felt so sad. At the start of the holiday, we'd seen the same sign and talked excitedly about all the things we were going to do on the holiday, Goosey saying she was going to eat a lot of raspberries. Then in the blink of an eye it was all over, as quickly as Goose ate those raspberries.
Strangely enough, during the two weeks we'd been in Sydney, I completely blocked out our lives in Dubai. It was like it didn't exist. I didn't think about friends here or school or things we do. I blanked it out. I was two busy visiting friends and family and enjoying life in Sydney. People at home rarely want to hear about life in Dubai, so it didn't seem strange not to think or talk about it.
Over the next few days I struggled to remember life in Dubai, it just felt so far away. Did this mean I didn't want to go back? Was I ready to call Australia home again? I didn't know, it all felt so strange. Especially as I wasn't sure I even wanted to go back to Sydney for a visit, before I left.
I boarded the plane home, still not sure how I felt about our whirlwind trip. Was I happy about going back to Dubai or did some part of me want to stay in Sydney? Arriving back in the sandpit, exhausted from the flight, it took about half a day to realise that this is where I'm supposed to be for the moment.
It's not all fun and games. There are plenty of times when it's lonely, when you feel that sense of isolation, it can put a lot of pressure on. But for now, we're home.