The power of reflection four years on

On 22 February 2011 my son Thomas was visiting his grandparents in Christchurch. Thomas and Dad were in the basement of Ballantynes when the earthquake struck.

It was a dreadfully concerning ten minutes waiting to hear they were okay. I thought at the time it was an hour. Cellphone records showed otherwise.

That’s nothing compared to the loss that hundreds, probably more, family members and friends of those killed still feel.

Seems like the other day so I read my blog of the day after to remind me. I am reminded it was also a big and sad day for Tim for completely different reasons.  I’d completely forgotten.

Keeping a journal of reflection can keep memories and insights alive.


The basement at Ballantynes

My son Thomas and Dad were in the basement of Ballantynes a year ago when the earthquake struck. I’ll never forget that frantic 10 minutes after getting a text from Mum “bad stake, I hope Tom and Dad are ok”.  Bloody predictive text – I didn’t realise at first what she meant.

I went down there after Christmas, down to the basement at Ballantynes I mean and checked it out. I sat there and reflected on what was a what could have been for my family. Lucky we all were, with people killed only a few dozen metres away.

Thomas has just returned from Europe, engaged to be married, and I don’t mind admitting I like having him safely back home. It felt especially poignant today thinking about a year ago when I felt, for a short time, absolutely powerless and anxious for him and Dad.

There was a lot of luck a year ago. Bad luck and good luck. We got the good one but it’s people just like us all that died.

I hope that those who are bereaved find some peace soon.