Not just after these messages.
As previously mentioned, I had to return to the US for a family emergency, namely the final illness of my grandmother. This comes less than a year after rocketing to the US for the exact same reason, that time for my grandfather.
This is one of the things about an international marriage that you don't really think about. I mean, when standing at the alter and seeing your beautiful bride coming down the aisle, you don't really give consideration to the problem of family, especially those members who might not be long for the world.
The thing with needing to return home is that an international flight does not come either cheaply, or quickly (My last minute flight cost the proverbial arm and a leg and ended up with me having to head to Korea first and then fly to the US), and so I got to spend a few days in Japan waiting and hoping that I would be on time, that I wouldn't get off the plane to find out that it was too late.
It's not a fun situation, but it is one that I have freely chosen. I'm not claiming that I have any regrets about deciding with Beloved to stay in Japan and raise our kids here, while the death of my grandmother hurts, I'm content with my choices. Not to mention that if it wasn't me, it would be Beloved when the time comes who would be jetting across the Pacific in the hopes of making it in time for the final illness of one of her family members.
This is the cost of going international, but I just had to look at the faces of my sons and embrace my wife to know it was a cost well worth paying for.
Besides, I did make it on time and my grandmother knew that I was there at the very end and her passing was a peaceful one, nothing else can really be hoped for.
So, yes, I'm back behind the keyboard and will be starting to write again. I'm sure we can get the funny going tomorrow as I describe the joys and trials of the Olympics. But at least I'm back home, in Japan.