Wednesday, 25 April 2012

A surprise goodbye

After going to the Anzac Day dawn service this morning I did a little more cleaning (I can't wait to be done with the windows!!!  Only 2 to go.).  Then I got myself and the Little Big Fella ready and we headed to my sister's place.  My brother-in-law had agreed to look after the three boys while my sister and I went out for a lovely, quiet sisters' lunch.

When we got to the restaurant I noticed the car of a friend I used to work with. We parked then started walking and I noticed another friend's car.  We walk up the stairs at the restaurant and there is a long table and I see the two friends whose cars I'd noticed.  Then I look around the table and see more people I know that I used to work with.  Then I notice my hairdresser.  Then Super Carer.  Then a good friend from Mum's Group.

Everyone is smiling and laughing and I'm thinking "what a strange thing that these people would all be here together - how do they know each other?".  It eventually dawns on me that they're all here to say goodbye to me!!!  My awesome sister had arranged a surprise goodbye party for me!  (Have I mentioned lately how awesome my sister is???)

I was SO overwhelmed that it took probably 20 minutes for me to get it together enough to order a drink!  Then it took me ages to decide what to order.  I was truly so overwhelmed that all these people would want to say goodbye to me.  I know that might sound kind of odd but I guess I got so caught up in packing and cleaning and even just parenting that I didn't realise how important it would be for others to want to say goodbye and good luck.  Even people I don't see regularly or may not have seen in a few years.

And I really need to say that I was so grateful for each and every person that came!  Each of you have added so much to my life while I've been here and saying goodbye was much harder than it may have looked.  I'm getting teary just writing and remembering now!  Thank you all for being so encouraging and supportive and just plain wonderful!

We had a great lunch with lots of laughing and catching up.  The food was good too.  I ordered a big burger and they weren't joking when they named it that!  My Mum's Group friend took a photo of me attempting to get my mouth around it, which was rather entertaining in itself (see below).  I got about half way through then had to put it down and eat it in pieces.  Even then I couldn't get through the whole thing!

Eventually the time came for goodbyes.  There were hugs all round and lots of good wishes and "keep in touch"es.  We all went our separate ways and I realised that this group of people won't ever get together again.  Three of us are moving away in the next few weeks and months so even when I come back to visit, it will never be the same again.  And so life moves on.

On the way back to her place my sister decided we should stop for coffee.  We happened to go to a place that another of my Mum's Group friends works at and she just happened to be working so I got to say goodbye to her too.

We drank our drinks watching the sun through the clouds over the beach and had a quiet sister time - just what I'd been expecting three hours earlier :-D

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