Max and I had a little road trip over Easter.
People drive every day, some people drive for hours. Generally, all together, in one day, I'll drive a total of an hour maximum. I used to be able to drive all day, it's how I'd clear my head. Until I got Max. Max the Magnet. Every panel, bar the two doors, has been replaced at least once. People just literally drive into him. I lost my confidence for driving after the first say 5 crashes! Now I do anything I can to avoid driving more than 10 ks away.
That's why my 218.1 km (I checked it on my iPhone!) was a fucking big deal to me.
Jill invited me to Wye River on The Great Ocean Road to spend Easter with her and her family. I'm sure Jill doubted that I'd turn up until she physically saw me! I doubted myself. I'm a bit of a gunner with things like that. The fact that I was sick would have been the perfect excuse to stay at home.
But on Saturday morning Max and I set off for the drive. My ETag didn't work and I took a wrong turn, it took about double the amount of time it should have to get there because of traffic, and when I finally got to Wye River, I thought I'd keep driving the extra 28 k's to Apollo Bay to see Mazz only to find the Mazz was at the pub in Wye River! But it was fun, thanks to the slow traffic, I got to see at lot of the coast line. I made it! Go me!
I got to the pub and had a drink with Mazz and her mates before Jill, Sim, their girls, Richo, Matt and Lisa joined us. Then we walked down to the camping spot. It was such a sweet little spot and Jill had it all set up like a professional.
That night, the girls played with sparklers and watched a movie while we had a spit roast and chatted for a few hours. It was the perfect, relaxing night. Exactly what the doctor ordered.
I watched Jill get her girls ready for bed and it made me a little sad. Thinking that I might never have that. All my life I've taken for granted that one day I'd be camping with my family and kissing my kids good night. That seems a lot further away today than it ever has before.
If I am ever a mum though. I will be just like Jill. I can't even begin to explain how much I admire and respect the way she brings up her girls. In fact, her morals, the way she lives her life, are admiral.
Though, there wasn't much time for sadness. Waking up to two girls and about 100 Easter Eggs hidden around the campsite is a great way to start the day! After the first Easter Egg hunt, there was another, then we watched the girls bounce around on the jumping castle before spending a lazy few hours reading crappy mags.
It was back to the pub for lunch and by about 3 Max and I were ready to hit the road again. A couple of minutes out of Wye River, I actually had tears in my eyes as I said to my self "Jandy! You're driving on your own on the Great Ocean Road, and it's raining!" I am so bloody proud of myself. I had a bit of an epiphany too. Seeing Jill and her girls wasn't sad, it was inspiration and motivation. And you know what? I put myself down far too much. I think people look down on me because I don't have the perfect relationship, I don't have kids, and I don't have a career as an excuse for the lack of either. But if you do look down on me, Fuck you! This is teaching me to be independent, not to rely on anyone else but me. At the end of this I am going to be strong and confident in who I am. I will be a force to be reckoned with, with a wealth of experience like catching trains by my self, flying in little planes, travelling OS, and solo road trips behind me. The sort of stuff to be admired for, not looked down upon.
Thank you Jilly. Your invitation was much more than just somewhere different to sleep for the night.