33. 1996 The rollercoaster continued at full speed…

These were busy times, full of family, fun and steep learning curves.  1996 began with a trip to Kaiteriteri for a  family reunion.

Extended family at Kaiteriteri
Extended family at Kaiteriteri

En-route we stopped in Napier to erect memorial works at my grandparents grave – this was a mission that had been on my mind for some time and it was a tribute that I needed to pay.


Late in 1994 we had built 2 additional rooms on the section behind the house with the plan that  my dad would help us with the big construction aspects to join these up to the house,  either side of the family reunion.  Again, we accomplished the mission with little time to spare but millions of memories and photos.

End of a hard days work
End of a hard days work

The busy life took its toll on my children and I – I left my job to concentrate on my childrens needs and find myself again.  This included greater time spent at their schools, supervising homework, attending to medical needs and being a mother.

Predictably enough, and inspite of my rescue efforts and unwavering loyalty, my relationship fell apart.  This was a major catastrophe and saw me at my most vulnerable.  Used, abused and willingly going back for more.  Friends stepped in and picked up the pieces. I am grateful for people like Anne G, Kay, Raewyn, Nigel, ‘the neighbour’ and my best Buddy Ally for being there to dry my tears, feed me food, drink with me and support my children.

I had an awesome birthday party which was sadly shared with Lady Di’s funeral telecast…and odd evening during which I made a speech (supported by my children) and sat in a high chair.

I am grateful that I had a father for a builder and a mother who taught us to sew as I was able to do what was required to complete this project.  I pulled wires, connected lights, created working plumbing, removed windows, plastered walls, made curtains and even mixed concrete by hand in a wheelbarrow….I was invincible.  I could do this myself!!!!! (with a few phone-calls to Dad)

I did it MY way
I did it MY way

I took time to read and reflect on my career direction and went back to study Adult Teaching and became a registered workplace assessor for the hospitality industry.  I was given the opportunity to assist in organising the Connoisseurs festival – a local culinary event.  I picked up some casual teaching in Bar Service and Food Safety …. and once again I threw myself into it all.

I ended this year back on top and knowing

  • whatever I set my mind to – I can achieve it
  • childrens chores teach valuable life skills
  • rescuing people is not neccessarily helping them or me
  • my children are my number one priority
  • friends and family are awesome

I still had so much to learn


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