The musings, thoughts and insights from a mom, wife and business owner in order to capture life, juggle it all and maybe even have some laughs
Monday, April 5, 2010
Vacations Sure Are Different with a 3-Year-Old
We're on vacation. Yes, 10 days of what sounded like bliss…skiing in Vail with my family, visiting good friends in Denver, time off, etc. But, here we are…nothing ever works out exactly as you plan. First, my child was a NIGHTMARE (and, yes, I meant to capitalize that word) on the airplane. You know the people that you look at and think "get a grip on your kid." Well, that was us. No nap, a tantrum, refusing a movie, coloring, toys, snacks, until she had a total fit over the M&Ms and took off her shoe and threw it while kicking the airplane seat in front of us. Yes, that was us. We arrived in the Denver airport to all of us crying (Ok, well, Jason wasn't crying, but he could have he was so mad). Next, Jason's temporary crown fell off his tooth (we jokingly keep saying his tooth fell out of his head) and then, he stepped out of the SUV we rented and turned his ankle on the first day we were here. No skiing for him and a trip to an emergency dentist. Really?
It took awhile, but we finally have settled in. Got past the "this is life" feeling, got some sleep, let some time pass and now we are having some fun. I tell you all this, because well, you may have been here before and if so, please share. I was so distressed by all of this that I thought "we are never going on vacation again." But do you know what happened? Two things: Jason got a haircut and we sat at the bottom of Vail Mountain for an afternoon.
Jason's Haircut Why in the heck would Jason getting a haircut matter? Well, as described above we had a few rough days and nights at the beginning of the trip. Jason and I were at our wits end. But when we got to Denver to see Dana and Barry, Jason decided he really needed a haircut. There was just not enough time before we left. When he came home from his haircut, he had a different sense about him. He told me that the woman who cut his hair was young, about our age (yes, I still try to call us young) and nice. She did a good job with his haircut. But, what had impacted him was their conversation. While he was in the chair he noticed she had a picture of a little girl on her mirror. Jason had already told her about us being out here to teach our 3-year-old daughter to ski. When he asked about her child, who looked about six or seven, she said that yes, she had a daughter, but she had died. It took Jason's breath away. He didn't know what to say. They went on to talk about the situation. She and her daughter had been in a car accident and her daughter had been injured -- a hole in her heart -- and they couldn't save her. The hairdresser wasn't injured at all. She said how horrible it was to live beyond your children and how much guilt there is with living when you're child dies. I know Jason offered his condolences. But, what a terrible story. Jason told me this and then looked at me and said "Shelly, there is a reason my path was supposed to cross hers today. The timing was right." He was right, it made all the stress of our travel and Sydney's behavior seem so small and silly in comparison.
The Bottom of the Hill On that same note, today Jason and I watched a man in a wheelchair get himself into a very cool ski contraption in order to go skiing. He had to slowly move his way into this chair and use poles with skis on them to maneuver. He had to pick up each leg separately and move it into the chair, clearly having no feeling in his legs. It was amazing and I said to Jason "Now that is dedication and not letting anything stop you." We had just gotten done talking about how much work it was to get Sydney dressed and ready for skiing, then schlep down to the slopes with all her stuff, make sure we didn't leave anything behind and Jason and I weren't even skiing. All that work, slugging of equipment, etc. didn't seem to matter anymore. Here was someone who had it even harder and was not complaining, but getting out there and doing something so difficult. Inspirational, I tell you. Very inspirational.
Enough sappiness for now. My point, vacations are very difficult and very hard, but still a joy of time with your family. Off to see if my child is passed out from learning to ski. Wishing you the courage and wisdom to be a no guilt mommy. I know I am still searching.