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Aug
26

It’s Getting Real

Things are getting really real now.

Two weeks ago I was telling a friend how calm I was feeling.  My to-do list was short, only five lines long.  We have been actively preparing for this trip for over two years!  The hard parts are done.  The house sold, we had our garage sale, we moved into our motorhome, we booked our flights, we started our immunizations, we talked and talked and talked about the trip with the kids to prepare and excite them, all that is left is the minor things like writing our wills, and packing our bags.

Last week we went to Vancouver for my sister’s wedding.  Since we were down there anyways we popped into the Thai consulate to get our tourist visas.  It was when our tourist visas were in hand that I realized “Holy Shit!  We only have six weeks till we fly outta here!!!!!”

 

The to-do list came back out of its hiding place and I have been an organizing ninja for the last few days.  I’ve booked our Hong Kong accommodation, drawn up our wills, made appointments for our last vaccine (typhoid), made queries, emailed travelling families for advice, canceled my cell phone, and booked our onward flight from Hong Kong (we are headed to Penang Malaysia to meet a whole shwack of other travelling families!  Whoot!  Whoot!)

Yeah, things are getting real.

And while I am still kinda calm about the whole thing,  I am starting to worry a wee bit.  I’m starting to do the whole ‘what if’ thing.

What if the kids hate traveling?

What if they won’t try new foods and become malnourished from only eating white rice?

What if someone gets sick with one of the really nasty diseases our travel doctor warned us about?

What if we arrive at an airport in the middle of the night with screaming, tired, hungry children and can’t find a place to stay?

What if we get to Hong Kong and are so jet lagged we waste our time there sleeping?

What if this fantasy I have built up in my head turns out to be just a fantasy and the trip is nothing like what I had hoped for?

Its not like Mike and I haven’t traveled before.  I would say we are fairly well traveled in the grand scheme of things.  But our last trip was in 2004.  That is EIGHT years ago!  We have never done more than a two week vacation with our kids and those where just camping vacations within BC!

I’m feeling like travel is going to be so much harder with kids.  After all, now its four people we have to consider instead of just two.  We are still dealing with the occasional tantrums and bedwetting, and the more than occasional sibling fights and whining.  But in six weeks we are going to be dealing with it in foreign countries!

I ran into a very old friend of mine recently and told her of our plans.  Her response was that she thought we were brave to travel overseas with our children.

Whats the definition of brave again?  Being scared but doing it anyways?

I guess that is us.

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17 comments

2 pings

  1. Rebeca says:

    This is going to be me soon, I hope! You will do great, I’m sure! We
    ve done three weeks at a time in Mexico with two, then three, then four kids, and it’s been fine. I have all those same fears though, and I think your definition of brave is great. Just do it. :>
    Our house is pending sale again so we’re back into the frenzy, hoping it will all go through this time. And getting a little more serious about figuring out what we’ll do when we’re free!
    So excited for you all!

    1. worldschooled says:

      That is so great Rebeca! I hope this one goes through for you! Maybe you could come and visit us in Thailand?

      1. Rebeca says:

        We’re talking about Thailand! If everything goes through this time we will be leaving around the beginning of October and probably will spend a month visiting family and friends around the country and a week or so in Haiti. Beyond that, we’re trying to figure out which direction we want to go. My husband is toying with a career move that would put us in California for 1 1/2-2 years starting in January so I’m not sure if we’re planning long term yet or not. Maybe just a few months right now? The CA opportunity would ultimately give us a lot more flexibility… so we’ll see. And it would also have him moving to various places so it could give us a good chance to live simply and have flexibility, plus explore Northern and Central California for a while. Who knows?

        1. worldschooled says:

          Sounds like a whole lot of big decisions are coming your way. You should definitely make up your minds on a beach in Thailand . hehehehe

  2. Barbara says:

    Nope, it’s going to be nothing like your fantasy. You’ve got to accept that and enjoy what happens. If you focus on how it’s not what you expected, you’ll be sabotaging yourself.

    It’s all going to be fine, though. We’ve arrived at an airport in the middle of the night, covered in baby vomit, had half our bags lost, no taxi drivers around, no phone … and we survived. Someone came to help us eventually. :-)

    Your trip is going to be great. Enjoy the anticipation … because once you get on that plane you’ll be an old hand.

    1. worldschooled says:

      Thank you Barbara. Is it just like riding a bike then? LOL. I can’t imagine arriving in the middle of the night covered in vomit with no bags, no phone, and no taxi! I think I would be the one having a tantrum!

  3. Tracy says:

    What Barbara said! It’s probably going to be a shock for you all at first. The boys getting used to travel, you and Mike adjusting to how different travel with kids is your previous adventures. But it’s all going to work out!

    And what if it doesn’t? What’s the worst case scenario? You head home or you stop somewhere until you are ready to move on and learn something about yourselves you didn’t know before.

    Don’t worry too much about the food btw. I swear our guys lived off white rice and fruit the first year of their travels and pizza the last year! They’ve grown like 20cm each since we started travelling! But honestly, just keep encouraging them to try new foods and make snacks nutritious. And where ever possible let them eat in your room. Kids get so sick of eating out in restaurants. Our guys would honestly rather have a bowl of cereal, some yogurt, fruit and nuts in the hotel room than head out for a meal.

    1. worldschooled says:

      Well, the kids do like chicken satay a lot. And they will never say no to a fruit. I think we will most likely do breakfasts in our room…at least for the kids….I am a noodle for breakfast kind of gal.

  4. alyson says:

    Breath! You’ll be fine, I’ve taken the kids to Thailand and Bali and all sorts of places, backpacking. It will be fine. Just like being home, people don’t change, just your surroundings, they will be more interesting. Ignore travel doctors, they are doom merchants, in 12 months travelling I had nothing, not even a touch of diarrhoea. Have fun and I’m looking forward to your next post!

    1. worldschooled says:

      Great advice….people don’t change, just your surroundings. I will be taking lots of deep breaths in the coming months!

  5. Shelly says:

    My dear cous’,
    What if the kids hate traveling? They may not like parts of it but that may be the same with you. Typically the new experience will push traveling dislikes to the rear of the mind.
    What if they won’t try new foods and become malnourished from only eating white rice? There is always fruit, yogurt, eggs and bread of some sort, oh Coca cola too ;)
    What if someone gets sick with one of the really nasty diseases our travel doctor warned us about? You could get many of those at home too remember.
    What if we arrive at an airport in the middle of the night with screaming, tired, hungry children and can’t find a place to stay? There is always a place to stay. It may cost more than you want to spend or it may not be a as clean as you like but there is always something.
    What if we get to Hong Kong and are so jet lagged we waste our time there sleeping? I found the jet lag to get me on the way home, no so much going ahead. If you can’t sleep and it is night time take a gravol to help you sleep (kids too) and you will quickly be on track.
    What if this fantasy I have built up in my head turns out to be just a fantasy and the trip is nothing like what I had hoped for? It will be different perhaps. but no fears. Have you ever met someone who has taken s a big journey and came home and said that it was a waste of time. I didn’t think so.
    We can’t wait to follow your journeys online!! xo

    1. worldschooled says:

      Thank you cous. I know we will figure things out and it will be fabulous, I’ve just got the jitters. Thank you for all your love and support.

  6. Madeline says:

    I’ll be reading along with interest and look forward to following your journey! We’re planning a six month trip with two young kids next year starting in SE Asia.

    1. worldschooled says:

      Fabulous! If you head out while we are still there make sure to contact us! Maybe we can meet up :)

  7. Renee says:

    You’ll have a great time, Amy. Everyone who tells you it won’t be your fantasy trip is right. But your adventure will be great in it’s own unique way. Even if the boys bicker or throw up or just eat rice or whatever.

    FYI I do understand how you’re feeling. We’re leaving in a few days, and though I’m excited, I’m dealing with my own doubts too.

    I can’t believe you were in Vancouver! It would have been great to meet you. Next time, hopefully.

    Hang in there…

    1. worldschooled says:

      Thanks Renee. Our time in Van was short and it was focused on my sister’s wedding otherwise we would have loved to see you. Maybe we will meet up one day somewhere else though. We both can’t keep traveling the world and not cross paths sometime!

  8. Star says:

    Wow we seem to be on a very similar start to our world adventures Hong Kong, these are all my fears too, plus my big one is what if we just want to come home but have sold everything and have nothing to come back too… best of luck, will enjoy reading along

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