It was five years since I last saw or spoke to my mother and father. We have a troubled history and because of it I decided to go my own way. I agreed to come for the celebration of my mother's 75th birthday, because it would make my mother happy and so I could see my four grand nieces and nephews for the first time. Our extended family met at a Chinese restaurant in Port Colborne and had a great feast to celebrate mother's birthday. I spoke to my mother and father briefly at the restaurant. After the meal we all returned to Jeff and Kelly's house for birthday cake and the opening of gifts for my mother. I spoke with my mother and father more at this reception and everyone had a good time. I declined the invitation to visit my mother and father at their home the next day as my return flight to Ottawa was already booked. I told them if they want to reach me, they can relay any messages through my sister Kelly. The experience was good on the whole, but still left me feeling drained emotionally. It is good to be back home with Mika.