I am not usually a worrier. I have pretty easily adopted an “anything can happen anywhere” attitude while we have been on the road. But I have to admit that these past couple of weeks, I have been worrying.
We are heading back to visit family and friends in less than three weeks, and I feel like my mind is about to implode with all the fear and worry I have been feeling. The insane part of this is that I am worried about going back to our home town!
We have now spent time in 14 different cities around the world since we left America almost a year ago. We have taken 29 flights, countless train and bus rides, and pretty much used every other form of transportation (well, not a horse and buggy… yet). We have eaten all sorts of food. We have been around all types of people. I have not been worried about any of those things, as much as I am about visiting our old home.
In all honesty, I do not usually worry, I think the fact that we are just heading “home” is making it much different from our other travels. I do enjoy writing about all aspects of our travel life though, and I guess my crazy, silly worries should be included. So here they are for your enjoyment and my sanity…
1) Our Health
Well, actually Zoë’s health. We have had our fair share of flus and colds in Zoë’s lifetime, almost monthly really . But colds and flus don’t faze me. I am confident that my child is going to be the healthiest, most physically well-adjusted child I know because she has literally been subject to different germs all the way around the world. We all get sick, and normal sicknesses such as these are uncomfortable, but necessary in my opinion.
Flus and colds are not what I am worried about obviously. I am worried about illnesses such as this new polio type of illness that has struck 25 kids in California. I am worried about measles, and tuberculosis and all the other scary things that a kid can get.
I know that most of the places we have visited have these illnesses as well, but for some reason I feel like we will be more exposed in America. Maybe it is that we are going to be seeing so many people in a three week period, or maybe it is the fear mongering media that seems to be the norm back home getting to me. Regardless, this worry is totally asinine. I know I need to get over it and trust that God will keep us healthy (and wash our hands A TON!).
2) Time Management
I am worried as to how we will be able to give enough time to family and friends, while still doing things just the three of us. Both sides of our family are large and both want all our time (who wouldn’t really.. I mean come on, we’re family), but luckily they already are trying to be kind and not pressure us too much about exactly how much time we spend with each side. This is when I wish that both sides of our family lived on a big commune and we could just all spend time together without the push and pull of going from place to place.
Chad and I have a lot of friends back home as well that we really want to see and catch up with (hopefully they have been reading this blog, so we can catch up with all the traveling stuff quickly and I can hear about their lives). It will be hard to make time for everyone, as everyone has their own schedules and responsibilities as well.
Three weeks goes quickly, but Chad and I are of the mind set that we will have a couple of scheduled things, but besides that we are remaining fluid. No set plans. I still worry though that it will be stressful and people with spend more time complaining about the time they do not get instead of loving the time they do. And for my family and friends that read this, I am not speaking of anyone in particular… I promise!
3) Eating Too Much
Wow, seriously what a first world problem. I almost feel guilty about stating this one. But so far on our travels, I have been conscientious enough (don’t let me fool you, it was mostly luck) to not have doubled in size with all of the wonderful food I have eaten along the way.
Everything is bigger in America though, I know you have all seen the pictures or experienced it for yourselves, the food (and drinks) that are served in most restaurants are big enough to share or split into two or three meals anywhere else.
I do not have any particular cravings for food in the States except for big, beautiful salads, so I am hoping that that will save me from having to buy a new larger wardrobe. It is very easy to get used to eating larger portions again though, so I know that if I share meals with others and watch myself, I can still enjoy all the delicious food that Santa Rosa has to offer. I think this worry is not that crazy, as it is going to cause me to be aware of what I am eating and stay healthy. But still, it’s a worry.
4) Saying Good-Bye Again
This is the one that worries me the most. Leaving the first time was heart wrenching, and that was before Z really knew what was going on. I can personally deal with the long distance relationships with family and friends, but I still struggle having Z so far from everyone. It breaks my heart to hear her ask for her grandparents, and to talk about her aunties and uncles and cousins. I do not know if it will be easier as she gets older and can understand the distance more, or if that will make it harder.
Regardless of how it will be in the future years, this year I am worried that we are traumatizing her by taking her away from her family again. The logical side of me says that many grandparents live far from their grandchildren and they all turn out just fine. The realist side of me says that Zoë has been given a year long crash course in saying “See you later” instead of good-bye and will handle it just fine… Children are much more flexible and resilient than us parents. Still, I do not want to hear her little cartoon voice say good-bye to those she loves, it makes me sad. I don’t worry that she can handle it, I guess, I worry that I can.
Whew, I feel better now, just getting those off my chest and seeing them in print. Hopefully , I will be able to get past them and enjoy myself while we are there. This is not like me at all, so I am trying a different approach to combat my crazies.
Thank you for reading and please comment with your thoughts. What are some of the things you worry about when you travel?
Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.