Monday, February 04, 2008

HSPs and "Family duty:" when you DON'T have a choice

Sometimes there are just things you "have to" do.

For some time, I have been putting off going to Europe, to visit my mother. My mother just turned 86, and is not in the best of health. However, the mere thought of the trip overseas has repeatedly pushed me to postpone, and postpone, and postpone.

Family, for me, has always been somewhat of a "duty thing." Some people grow up in close-knit loving and supportive environments, some do not. My family not only fits in the latter category, family members are also spread out thinly, all around the world.

The prospect of the visit-- which continues to cause me stress-- is rather overwhelming.

There is the trip to get there-- a three-hour bus ride to the SeaTac airport, a 9-hour flight to London, an overnight stay at an airport hotel, followed by a "milk run" (5:30 am) flight to Gibraltar the following morning, followed by a taxi ride to where she lives... while hoping my luggage hasn't accidentally been sent to Kinshasa or Tierra del Fuego.

There is the cost of the trip-- it's not just airfare and hotels, it's also the "cost" of having to close down my business (I'm self-employed), and the "cost" of not having an income, while I am gone.

Then there's the visit, itself-- going and staying with my mother for two weeks isn't something I'd readily do, even if she lived a couple of miles down the road. Whereas we certainly "get along" on a superficial level, I am always reminded that sometimes "the acorn" DOES fall a very long way from "the tree." The fact that our basic values, and how we view life, are so radically different, another layer of stress exists. Frankly, I don't enjoy "regressing" to a point where I feel like "myself, at age 8."

Anyway, this trip is going to happen fairly soon.

Which is also my way of saying that I may not be updating these pages on a regular basis, for a while.

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