2011 in a nutshell.
I look back on the year I've had so far and I cannot believe the number of ups and downs life has thrown at us. Back in February I left a job I loved in an industry I adored, working with colleagues who were the most amazing, hilarious, inspiring bunch of people. Leaving the job was a consequence of our decision to leave Clapham, London which I was really starting to appreciate and fall in love with to move back to Greece with my new fiance (he proposed the weekend before Valentine's Day!).
The emotional rollercoaster of leaving a job and city I loved to move to a new country, whilst also planning a wedding, was SERIOUSLY overwhelming. Not to mention that we were moving back in with my parents. Which later on also included my grandma and grandpa who were not very well and whom we didn't want to leave on their own. Starting to plan the wedding was fun. Invitations. Favours. Centerpieces. The house was full of them. And although I didn't appreciate it as much as I should have at the time, I was really glad I got to spend time with my grandparents.
|The view from my sister's rooftop terrace. Yes, she has a pool. Well jels.|
In May, my grandmother started to get more and more unwell and the doctors told us there wasn't much time left with her. This was beyond upsetting. The only thing I wished for was that she would at least make it to see me as a bride in August. All of our attention, our love and our prayers, were focused on my grandmother getting better.
Little did I know that Life was just about to throw the mother of all curve balls: my grandfather passed away in what used to be my old bedroom. I was there as he passed. To say that was traumatic would be an understatement. Although, once he was at peace, everything was OK again. The day of his funeral my grandmother was taken to hospital. This was absolutely heartbreaking. Only a week after my grandfather had passed away my grandmother also died in hospital . In a very selfish way, I felt really hard done by that this was happening just 3 months before my wedding. The time which was meant to be the happiest of my life. It was devastating.
|The view from where I sit down and work/write at home.|
I'm really sorry to say that it doesn't end there! About a month after my grandparents passed away and just one month before our wedding my dog of 12 years had to be put to sleep. At this point, I was just like 'you have GOT to be kidding me?!'
Sorry, I really didn't start out to make this post such a downer. But I am thankful for so many things despite all the sadness this past year. I am so SO grateful that I returned from England just in time to spend 3 months actually living and breathing my grandparents. I could have just as well have been in the UK when they passed.
I know I complained a lot during that time thinking a couple planning their wedding should NOT be living with their parents let alone their grandparents etc. but thinking back, I am so so grateful that I got to spend so much time with them before they were gone forever. I am also grateful because during such a time of sadness we also had a source of incredible pleasure. We had a wedding to plan! We had all of that to look forward to and I can't tell you how much this lifted our spirits. Even though I will forever be sad that my grandparents didn't get to see me as a bride, in a funny way, the timing of all of these events kind of worked out. It was just a matter of time before all of this happened and the divine power (or whatever it is) was very crafty in making it happen the best way it could have.
Although, I can't help thinking someone up there is having a seriously good laugh.