We interrupt your regular browsing to provide you with a quick update on the Family Bucketeers and to wish everyone a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.
As you may know, we arrived back in Canada in May (yes, we are aware that was months ago) and almost immediately our lives became very chaotic. I am amazed at how quickly we got sucked into the old vortex of running errands, working, schooling, daily life, leaving no time for fun and relaxation. At times we have to remind ourselves to stop, slow down and enjoy the moments as they occur.
Upon arriving back to Saskatchewan, we spent a few days in the city at a hotel, to get our bearings and to start unwinding. Then we moved out to the lake for the summer, because as you may recall, we sold our home just before we left on our trip. Living at the lake was meant to give us a chance to identify and weigh our options. At that time we were considering various ideas and leaving all our options open, while considering everything. Do we move back into the city? Move to a small community outside the city? Or stay living at the lake for the winter?
But……. after spending a number of months commuting into the city for work (almost three hours a day that worked out to about 265 hours) we decided living at the lake was not an option. By the time I would return home at the end of a work day, I was just too tired to do anything but get ready for bed, so I could do it all again the next day. I was not enjoying this kind of life.
During May and June the kids finished up their online schooling, which at times was just as difficult to do as it was while we were traveling, especially when the sun was shining and the lake and outdoors were calling their names. With some dedication and focus, by the end of June they had finished their required course work and were ready to lay back and enjoy life at the lake.
And then in August our world flipped upside down. We found Aurora unconscious on the floor, called 911 and shortly afterwards we had nine emergency medical professionals in our kitchen (First Responders, Paramedics and Stars Air Ambulance). After hours at the ER and numerous follow up tests it was determined she had epilepsy. So many thoughts ran through our minds….thinking that maybe she had a seizure because of hormones, that she was just growing and that she would outgrow it and of course I was also in disbelief. It was hard to believe and understand. How could we have missed the signs for all these years? (Yes, the doctors believe she has had epilepsy and has been having “absence seizures” for years)?
She was put on anti-seizure medication and was given appointments for an EEG, a MRI and with a neurologist for follow-ups. But within a few weeks she had another grand mal seizure and then was given a different medication, then more meds and more appointments. At times it felt as if we had a revolving door at the doctor’s offices. Aurora has been diagnosed with two forms of epilepsy and she and our family are slowly learning to live with epilepsy. We aren’t exactly sure what that will look like, but for the next while world travel is not in the picture. So no… there wasn’t a trip to New York for Christmas (another thing on our bucket list); but there is always next year.
After Aurora was diagnosed with epilepsy we felt more of an urgency to move into the city. We looked at so many houses (+65) that I was just about ready to give up and just rent something for the winter. I was exhausted and needed the three hours of driving every day to end. Then, finally, we found a perfect home for our family. We quickly put an offer in, they accepted it and 10 days later we moved in. That’s exactly how our life works. Quickly! Yes, we still have boxes that still need to be unpacked, but we have settled into our new home and are enjoying it immensely.
The kids are back in regular school. Noah started high school, which means he is up and out the door at 7am to catch the bus. But he is enjoying highschool. Aurora is in grade 6 at a new school too. She is so happy to be back at school and hanging out with both old and new friends.
Our life has always been filled with ups and downs; probably not much different than yours; and since returning home I can’t say that has changed. Together, as a family we move forward dreaming about our next adventure and reminiscing about the wonderful experiences we had over our 13 months of travel.
We want to wish you a very Merry Christmas and hope 2016 is filled with magic for you.
We also want to thank you for following us in our adventures and hanging in there with us. As we started out blogging, it was like a family diary to document our trip and even though we are now home again we still have more blogging to do (as you know we are not up to date on our blog) and because we still have stories to tell (because if we don’t write them down we fear we will forget them). We hope you continue to hang in with us as we post them. Stories have been started and are waiting to be posted. We do plan to post these archived memories and hope you return to read them.