Blue skies and sunshine = my idea of heaven.
I am from New Zealand, but now live in Northern Ireland. I have gone from a land of sunshine, tropical weather, and tanned skin; to a land of cloud and rain, and pasty whiteness. I have started using fake tan. I know, the shock and horror of it. Does anybody from New Zealand use fake tan? I did not even know it existed until I moved here... *joking*
But, these last two weeks have been glorious - absolutely beautiful. I always tell Shay and Florence that we have to make the most of the sun and we sing that, "sunshine makes us happieeeeee". We have been sitting outside for the last fortnight, nothing achieved (apart from tans - yay), and plenty of happiness to spread around.
Being outdoors and in the sun is something I was reared with and it is something I miss a great deal. When I am outside with the children gardening or going for a walk, I often think of Patrick. His birthday always seems to bring some sun (thank you Patrick). I always think that I should have three children running around, three children to buy togs for, and three lots of ice cream to share. But, I also think, this is my lot. This is my definition of family forever. I try and teach the children to be thankful for what the day brings and to be grateful that we are able to enjoy these things.
After everything that has happened, and with investigations still going on, when the sun comes out, I can honestly say that I am happy with my life. The only 'bad' thing in my life is that Patrick is not here, but that can never be changed. I accept this and am turning his death and what happened to us into something positive, into something to be harnessed to teach and educate, and raise awareness. I do not know where this is going, or where it will end up (although I know what I want the finish line to look like), but I am grateful that I am moving, no matter how slowly.
I feel guilty sometimes for Patrick, that maybe I should not be happy; that I should not forgive. I feel that to forgive those for what they did or did not do, will somehow be saying that it is 'okay' that their actions led to Patrick's death. But I know that this is not the case and that this is an unhealthy outlook to have. It is something that I am working on.
I read that other day (and it has become like a mantra to me): "remember that out of hardships come extraordinary things". Patrick is my extraordinary thing, my movement, my motivation.