Tony and I wondered if our road trip was going to be a disaster.
At the beginning of March, we drove our three-month-old daughter to a city that was over four hundred miles away. After driving for only an hour, we had to stop for forty-five minutes because the baby needed to be fed and changed twice. I wondered if it was even possible to get there before the next morning.
Thankfully, we only needed to make two more stops. She enjoyed the music from my ipod. She and I moved our arms to the music. I sang to her. She slept. Tony and I felt relieved.
I’ve always been a traveler at heart, but the way I’ve traveled has changed over the years. When I was a child, my life as a missionary kid was full of unpredictable traveling. I learned how to go along with my parents’ travel plans, not knowing which country we’d be stopping in the following month. As a teenager, I went on some short mission trips without my family, and I started tasting the excitement that came with exploring the world on my own. In my early twenties, I began going on longer international trips. Everything was on a budget, and if I was going to see things, I had to do it as cheaply as possible. I would spend hours hunting for bargains online. Traveling became an exhilarating, creative adventure. Then I chose to live in another country. Living in Guatemala was harder than visiting a place for a month or two. There were exciting times, but I also had to adjust to things like living with one hour of running water each day.
Tony and I have been blessed with opportunities to travel together. It’s been nice to have a consistent travel partner. When I traveled alone, it was carefree. I would choose what I wanted to do on a whim. When I started traveling with Tony, I learned how to adopt some of his traveling preferences, and he learned how to adopt some of mine. As time went on, we began to do traveling “our” way.
Now that we have a little one, “our” way of traveling is changing again. It’s not just about us and what we want to do. We still fit in activities that we enjoy, because I really believe that happier parents have more energy to give to their children. But we also want our daughter to enjoy traveling. We want her to have an abundance of happy memories. We want her to grow up with an appreciation for what this beautiful world has to offer. And I hope that she’ll find her own way of making the world a better place.
How do you like to travel? Last week was St. Patrick’s Day, an Irish holiday that I enjoy celebrating each year. I think that the Irish have beautiful blessings for people and their travels. I hope that this Irish blessing holds true for your journeys through life. . . .