It was a fair dinkum, kick-arse, weird week at MIA.
First up, the Ex and I had our mediation.
For those outside of Australia, mediation is something you go through as a last ditch attempt to avoid going to the expense and emotional upheaval of court whilst divorcing a former love.
I'm not allowed to say much about our mediation, but I can tell you it sucked. Hugely.
Ironically enough, the mediation venue was in walking distance of the mental health hospital I was once a guest of, thanks to the major depressive disorder which was diagnosed during the end of my marriage in January 2009.
That period was the roughest, most gut-wrenching time of my life; and yet it was life-changing, in a good way, as well. I'm not the broken, shell of a woman who walked through those hospital doors anymore, and I never will be again. And for that, I am truly grateful.
In an even more unusual juxtoposition of services, the law office where the mediation occured was right next to two wedding/bridal shops. Lovely.
So that just really put the icing on the cake of a really crappy day.
For a couple of days following mediation, I could barely talk to anyone. I felt so let down by the legal system. I can only liken the experience to having my insides pulled out and trampled over by a thug, while a thief rifled through my wallet and took everything.
I felt like pulling the doona over my head and staying in bed for a week.
But then I remembered, that I'd secured partial sponsorship to Nuffnang Australia's inaugural blogopolis, and that perhaps it might be timely to attend.
Besides, it seemed like kismet that blogopolis was occuring on what would have been my 11th wedding anniversary. And we had spent some of our honeymoon in Melbourne. It felt right, to go, despite or perhaps in spite of, how crap I felt.
Somehow, the planets aligned and I was able to get fairly affordable flights (thanks Virgin Australia). My accommodation (wotif's mystery hotel deal, which was at the Melbourne Citigate, and within walking distance of the blogopolis venue, was also a bargain).
On arrival at Melbourne, the flight was on time, and I jumped into a cab because the Airport Bus chick told me I'd have to go to a station, then walk to another one and take another train). I just wanted to get to the conference, and didn't want to miss any more of it than I had to.
Instead, thanks to a fab taxi driver, I made it there only about 15 minutes late, and that was only because it took so long to find the freaking conference venue once I'd arrived at the corner of Swanston and Flinders streets.
And then, despite my 3 am start, despite my stress and anxiety, I felt at home as I was warmly welcomed by the best of Australia's bloggers. And my fatigue and stress disappeared.
We squeed, we hugged, and we learned.
It was awesome.
Walking to my hotel. Taste of Paris anyone?
To be continued ...