15 May 2015

The Road That Will Be Less Travelled

Source: Parks Canada, Elk Island National Park, pc.gc.ca.

Growing up, I didn't travel very much or very far. My trips were limited to mostly places in Alberta (like Jasper, Banff, Calgary, Crowsnest Pass) and BC (Sparwood to see family). Beautiful places but close to home. Affordable.

When I reached of age where I could make my own travel decisions - and had the funds to do so - I ventured out. My first couple of trips were bus tours so that I could pack the most into a trip in an affordable & safe fashion. Along with my friend Joanne, we went to places like New York City, Washington DC, Savannah, St. Augustine, Orlando, San Diego, Phoenix, Las Vegas, Grand Canyon and places in-between.

When I met the man who was to be my husband, we traveled one, maybe two times a year to Las Vegas. Last year, we did an epic one month road trip from Edmonton to Las Vegas, then over to Anaheim (and Disneyland), then up the Pacific Coast Highway with stops in places like Monterey, San Francisco & Port Angeles.

I have always made travel a priority, but this year, my priorities have had to shift.  My husband & I would love to continue to travel as we have. But we are trying to have a baby. We also want to retire early. While we are fortunate in that we have no major expenses, our goals mean that we have had revise how we travel.

This year, my husband & I made a difficult but correct decision to put off major travel plans.  The many places we want to see are being pushed back for the time being.

They say you should live your life to the fullest so you have no regrets. But the reality is that sometimes, you have to balance your regrets & your dreams. I would regret making travel a bigger priority than having a child or being able to retire early.

We haven't completely abandoned travelling though. We decided to stick to local areas where we could see something in one day (or overnight at the most). Just like in my youth, we will stick around this beautiful province.

On tap for this summer includes:

  • A trip to Elk Island National Park.  I've never actually been there before, so I am quite excited. Plus it's relatively close to home, so we can do this in a day.
  • A picnic at Ma-Me-O Beach in Pigeon Lake and at Wabamun Lake.
  • Little road trips here and there that are within driving distance, stopping to see sites and having a picnic. 
We are also considering places like Drumheller, the Ukrainian Cultural Centre, the Ponoka Stampede, any type of festival or event in a nearby town, the Reynolds Museum, etc. I am extremely lucky to live in a beautiful province like Alberta with all the scenery & travel options

When it comes to travel, I seemingly have come full circle with my youth.

14 May 2015

The things left unsaid.

Yesterday has no reason to end the way it did.

I woke up in a generally good mood. I had a productive work day and finished my tasks. I went to my new weekly fitness class and left a little bit stronger (even if the legs had the shakes).  My husband & I had an enjoyable dinner with great conversation.

By all accounts, my day was actually pretty good.

And then I uttered something to my husband at the worst possible time. I created hurt. It came from a place of hurt. I uttered it from a feeling of frustration. It was motivated by wanting to shift the burden & guilt to someone who was already carrying his share.

I could have very easily chosen not to be mean. I could have very easily chose to be understanding.

I could have left things unsaid.

But the infertility struggle comes with many emotions. Sometimes the emotions are ugly and can't be hidden.

I made a promise that I wouldn't go "crazy" on this infertility journey. That whatever shall be shall be. Most importantly, I promised it wouldn't interfere with the loving relationship I have with my amazing husband.

Yesterday, it interfered. Yesterday, all the isolation and guilt and anger and frustration and sadness came out in a few sentences. The wound was swift. The wound was deep.

It was unfair of me. It was mean. It was cruel. And now I must repair the damage I caused.

I can blame the drugs I am on, certainly. I can blame my inability to just confront people with my concerns. I am not a people pleaser, but I am also not a feather ruffler. In the past, when I have said something (usually coming from the same place as this time), it's created hurt and misunderstanding.

My choices always seem to come down to either remain silent, or say something & risk misunderstanding, anger, & hurt. I haven't figured out yet how not to do that.

Lesson is that sometimes, things are simply better left unsaid.

*Update: Love means saying you are sorry. And I did.  Love means forgiveness. And he did. xo*