After a two-week swim meet turned vacation that involved 6 states and 3,000 miles you would think I would be happy to be home. I’m not.
When the kids were younger I despised road trips. When Sophie (8) was just a baby, I would make the trek from Ohio to North Carolina alone – several times a year. Sarah who was barely 2 was prone to car sickness. We had this “spot” in the mountains of Virginia where she would projectile vomit. I pulled over at the exact same stop in the mountains every single trip (both directions) to clean up. I did get smart after the first few incidents and I moved her car seat to the passenger side. One, two or all three were always screaming at some point in the trip. The minivan was appointed with the required DVD player and we would watch the same movies over and over again hoping for any amount of peace and quiet. I bought the entire stock of pacifiers from Target for Sophie and would just keep handing them back as she would lose them. By the time we arrived at our destination the entire car floor was covered in wayward pacifiers and mashed up food particles. I would chug wine immediately upon arrival. I swore that I hated road trips and always promised “this would be my last”.
Fast forward 8 years. The girls either sleep, read or listen to music in the car. Oh, and they keep me company. With interesting conversation. Our life is hectic and busy and we really don’t spend as much time as we should just being in each others company. We laughed, played trivia and belted out Taylor Swift songs. I enjoyed the conversations but also the silence, I found a certain peace in it. I savoured the glass of wine at the end of the trip.
I was surprised to learn most of my friends thought I was crazy for taking this journey with the girls. I tried to reassure them that 8 years is a lot of time and much can change. They walked away shaking their heads, not persuaded.
The last few hours of our trip we started planning next years adventure. I am going to enjoy these moments in time while I can. In six years Grace is off to college, two years later Sarah will be on her way and two years Sophie will leave me. Then they will all be gone. Chris and I would love to travel the world and hang out on beaches when they move on but at that point we will be completely broke and may have to live with one of them after paying for swimming, braces, vacations, colleges and weddings. I hope if we are good to them now they will take pity on us someday.
In the meanwhile, I decided I want to be a Gypsy. We can get a Winnebago and drive around the country (primarily the parts with beaches and no snow). I am probably not mentally equipped to home school but they have all that set up on the internet these days. Chris can be their swim coach. We will need to figure out how to pull the 25 yard pool off the back of that thing but that’s just a small detail to be ironed out. Totally doable.