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The Fiordland earthquake in 2009 measured 7.9 on the richter scale. Although in the South Island, it was felt as far as central North Island. It occurred a few months after we migrated back to NZ. During that quake Aunty Marva woke up, scared, and called out to her Mum from her bed. She told me this story the next day. I was not here to hear it because we moved into my Mothers house just down the street. To this day, I don't know why we moved there. It never felt homely or right.

Not moving into our house during that time was one of my biggest regrets. I wish I had been here during her last 6 months because she was scared the night of that earthquake. She was scared to be sick and alone. I know she wanted us here with her and the day before she died I promised her I'd move back home with her. I started moving that same day not knowing she'd be gone the next.

September will mark 10 years since she's been gone. Usually an unveiling occurs a year after the death. The stone had been in the works for a few weeks. It's nothing extravagant, but it's something now. She'd been nameless for 9 years.

Sorry for not coming home to you, to our home. I really wanted to.
Sorry for not having a stone a year later. Life got in the way.
Sorry for not making your unveiling a priority. In my heart I did, but I didn't have the finances.
Sorry for not being there when you died. I still cry about it.
Sorry I didn't invite anyone today, but doing it alone was my closure for being sorry after 9 years.

Just like her, quite often I find myself awoken in the middle of the night wanting to call her name into the dark. I swear she is moving around our house sometimes.
She was my comfort. My sanctuary. I know that love didn't stop with death.
I will continue to miss you every day until I see you again.


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