An Update

September 15, 2012

Hello Readers!

An update on the lack of updates:

I had my first interview with the Wellington Hospital for a short stay unit position. I felt like it went really well, actually. My agent, Kristin, was also happy with the sound of it. Scott & I celebrated, all while considering that Wellington isn’t exactly our first choice location to move to, and that maybe this was just a good practice interview.

I’m not sure if its karma or coincidence, but I did not get the job. Unfortunately, they decided to hire someone with more immediate availability. I told them I was available ASAP, but would prefer to start at the beginning of 2013, allowing us some adjustment time after the move. Lesson learned. They did, however, mention that they were very impressed by my interview, and encouraged me to apply again, closer to my preferred start date.

Sometimes when we think we had something, even though we didn’t, it feels like we lost it. I feel like I lost a huge opportunity, even though realistically if I got a job right now we’d be ahead of schedule. Nonetheless, I have seven more applications in process right now, 2 in Christchurch, 2 in Wellington, and 3 (fingers crossed!!) in Nelson.

The bigger reason for the lack of updates: while my head has been wrapped around our New Zealand plans, my heart has been here. Let me explain:

I’m not even sure what the etiquette is related to writing about delicate family issues on one’s blog, but then again I figure that this is my outlet, and I will do with it what I see fit. That being said, I must disclaim: I am looking for neither sympathy nor pity. But if you see me over the next few days or weeks and I look like a zombie, there is no other reason.

My fantastic 98-year-old grandfather is in the final chapter of his life. Over the last year he’s had a lot of ups and downs related to the many, many medical conditions one collects after a century of life. As a result, the last few months have left him exhausted and quite ill, and although he has expressed his willingness to pass on, his body will not allow it. And although I feel like Im being dramatic when I say that, my heart hurts for him when I see how tired he is and when I realize what a huge front he puts up for us. Over the last year he has been a model patient, lovely to be around, witty and wise. But recently, after learning about a whole a new slough of diagnoses, he said “Its just time to give up”.
I agree whole-heartedly with him, and I know his life has been full, his heart has been full, and that he leaves us, and this world, on the best of terms. He left his family home as a young teenager. He rode on boxcars, was a hobo, stood in soup lines, stowed away on a ship to Alaska, got work, made money, served in WWII, became a train conductor, a husband, a father, and a grandfather. He traveled, frequently alone. Russia. China. Panama. He made a healthy living and smart investments with an 8th grade education. He is a survivor. He has inspired many family members, and he has inspired me throughout my whole life. It is his spirit in me that tells me to explore the world, and of course New Zealand. (He is quite possibly the strongest advocate of this plan.) He’s not gone from us yet, but I would be kidding myself to think there is much time left, and no matter how much I try, he’s pretty much all I think about. The ups and downs of the last few weeks, stateside and overseas, just pale in comparison to my grandfather, his journeys, and this place we are now. He is such a strong, compassionate, and inspirational man. I hope and pray to find his strength in the times ahead.

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