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Where I’ve Been, Where I’m Going

I was lucky enough to have a very happy childhood growing up on a farm on the east coast of NSW, Australia. I went to Agricultural College, and then went on to do Environmental Science at university. I’ve been living and working in Sydney since I graduated, about 8 years ago.

The past twelve months or so have been the most difficult of my life, but also, in many ways, the best.

  • In mid-June 2009 my Dad was diagnosed with inoperable cancer, and we’d had no clue. I couldn’t remember him having a day of illness before then.
  • About 2 weeks later I broke up with my fiancé, who’d I’d been with for 5 years. Within a month I moved out of the house I’d been sharing with him.
  • Dad started chemo not long after that.
  • In October I went on my first overseas trip by myself to New Zealand.
  • In January Dad nearly died from the high dosage of chemo he was on, and the fairly shitteous hospital he was briefly in.
  • May 10th 2010 6:45am Dad died.

In this time I’ve discovered (or re-discovered) many aspects of myself I had been letting lay fallow for years. Meditation, yoga and Buddhist studies are becoming increasingly significant parts of my life, and I wouldn’t say they’ve brought me “comfort”, but they’ve definitely helped me to tap into a constant source of joy and peace.

I’m also now looking seriously into moving into Aboriginal reconciliation in some way. I’m not sure how yet, or in what capacity, but I’m lucky enough to have some great friends (both Indigenous and non-Indigenous) working in that field, and I’m currently in the process of picking their brains, learning as much as I can and taking opportunities that come my way. I’m very excited to see where it will all take me.

Just like everyone, I’m half-way between where I’ve come from and where I’m going.

4 Comments leave one →
  1. August 23, 2010 4:50 am

    I identify with what you’ve written here. My daughter passed away 3 years ago and I’ve struggled with an inner ear disorder. The most difficult years of my life have brought me to Buddhist exploration, yoga and much more. And like you said – I’m between here and over there. Aren’t we always?

    • August 23, 2010 9:27 am

      Thank you so much for sharing, K, and my deepest sympathies for your loss.
      Difficult times really are our best opportunities for learning, growth, and developing compassion for ourselves and others, aren’t they?
      Take care of yourself, H.

  2. September 28, 2010 4:12 am

    Dearest Helgecko,

    Dads and cancer, huh? How are you doing, a few months on? I’m 13 months on and getting there… though I have no idea where ‘there’ is, actually. What I do know is the possibility for heart-opening and incredible transformation is greater when you’ve faced that. When the mystery is lifted, suddenly anything’s possible. Who knew that they’d give us such a gift? Wish I’d known all this when you came to see us in NZ… we could have talked for hours about our lovely Dads in that beautiful up-north place. Happy halfway point.

    x GG

    • September 28, 2010 9:22 am

      Thank you so much Gemma.
      “How are you doing?” – it’s an impossible question to answer, isn’t it? I think the only slightly accurate answer I’ve got is something like:

      “I’m sadder than I’ve ever been, I’m happier than I’ve ever been and I’m immensely grateful for both. Most of the time I’m “fine” and “normal”, and sometimes a thought or a memory comes along like a punch in the guts. But that punch is as full of joy and love as it is of pain.”

      You’re right, it’s an incredible gift they give us. Especially if you’re lucky enough, like we were, to spend the last few hours with them.

      I hope we do get another chance to talk some time. And something tells me we will 🙂

      Arohanui and big hugs, Hel xo

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