In flight from Bordeaux to Paris, and after a hectic couple of months in my homeland and now on the continent, I’m calm and focused again.

A brief catch up:

My 94-year-old father had a series of falls and was diagnosed with dementia

He was hospitalized, and after 3 weeks put in the “memory support unit” of a nursing home

I supported from afar best I could while trying to sort my own wandering life out

One afternoon in late August, I got a call from my sister while I stood under palm trees in Santa Monica. “Your Mum needs you. I need you.”

That night, after dancing my ass off at a Smashing Pumpkins concert, I bought a ticket to Adelaide. The plan: I’d spend two weeks and go back to Cali to move into our new place before the annual Europe trip. Everything would be great. I left 20 hours later

Narrator: everything would not be great

My oldest half brother was an arsehat, unleashing tsunamis of vitriol over the rest of the family. I ended up staying 3 weeks longer and skipping the Cali stopover. We had a tribunal hearing, and I became unexpectedly intimate with the minutiae of South Australian administrative law. Yay for a law degree! The outcome of the hearing was what we wanted and I left for Europe the day after Dad turned 95.

(The arsehat actually just appealed the tribunal decision – his arsehattery knows no bounds.)

Several weeks on, and Europe has been deliciously cathartic. And from thousands of miles distance I’ve also realized, what I experienced in Australia was fucking amazing.

I connected way deeper with all my family (arsehat excepted) than ever before.

Mum, my sister and I really drew together to pull through the challenges, LOLing as much as possible along the way.

I connected with the Barossa Valley and Radelaide.

I tapped into a new inner font of feminism and confidence.

I’ve been a bit off the map with all this. But I’m back on it, brighter and more energized than ever.



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