I often travel alone. Sometimes my husband joins me, more often my daughter does, but most of the time I go all by myself. I love the freedom that travel gives me, and just because I have a family it doesn’t mean I need to give that up. I am often questioned about it and I decided it was time to put it all out there. Many well-meaning folk make comments such as ‘It is so nice that your husband lets you go.’ or ‘I can’t imagine leaving my child at home while I went to a different country.’ I’m always left slightly offended while I wonder why people find it so surprising that a person can be a mother and an adventure seeker simultaneously.
I’m Living My Dreams
The truth is, my husband doesn’t let me do anything, we are supportive of each others dreams- and this is mine. Just as I am 100% behind anything he wants in life, he gives me the same respect. This doesn’t mean we don’t discuss prospective trips, I always speak with him before I go anywhere just as he does with me.
I spent several years as a stay-at-home mom. It wasn’t necessarily by choice, but one of those things that life threw at me. It wasn’t my calling (way too hard to be honest- high five to all those moms out there rocking it) but it gave me time to figure out what I wanted from my life. It also gave me time to travel. The Kid and I would jump in the car and visit Germany or Belgium or some random city in The Netherlands for the day. We’d practice our colors at the Van Gogh Museum, learn about food at Amsterdam’s Albert Cuyp market, and spend time together doing amazing things I felt very grateful to be able to do with my daughter.
Eventually she had to start school, and our carefree days of following the wind were over. At least Monday-Friday.
Why I travel. I refuse to choose.
I want to be a good example to my daughter. I want her to know she can have it all. If she wants to, she can be a mom, she can get married, and she can still live her dreams every day. When I leave for a week, it isn’t easy. Every day when I am gone I wake up and wish they were there with me. BUT, I keep pushing on because this is my dream. I love to travel. I love writing about travel. I love sharing my travels with you. I want it all. I refuse to choose.
90% of my life involves PG movies on the couch, cuddling with my family. School drop-offs and making dinner, checking homework and reading bedtime stories. I love it. But the truth is, I am a better mother and a better wife, because I take time for myself and prioritize my dreams.
Just putting it out there- when my husband has a business trip in a different country, nobody makes him feel guilty. He gets a high-five and is told to have an awesome time. The family he is “leaving behind” never gets referenced.
When people I hardly know, and those I have known for years, ask me how I can travel and leave my family behind- it honestly makes me angry. I refuse to feel guilty for living my life to the fullest. My daughter will always know that the world is available to her. That she can have it all. And that is the example I want to leave her with.