Double the fun: coupling up to travel

Mother and daughter high teaAs a single mom sometimes traveling with kids solo can be overwhelming.  Where at home they may have had a neighbor or friend to occupy some of their time, on vacation you are on center stage all the time.  In trying to be interesting and fun you may wipe out some of the time that you need as an adult to relax and recuperate that are essential in vacation time.  My most recent trip to Sydney I had the great luck of a friend being able to join me with her daughter.  The addition allowed for everyone to have an enhanced trip as things tend to be more enjoyable when you have someone with you who can share your point of view and interest.

Sand monsters in Bondi BeachOn previous trips with just my daughter and myself I filled almost one too many shoes.  I had to be the planner and organize what to do and where to do go but I also had to be the playmate and make sure that my daughter was getting the most out of the experience that she could, after all isn’t that what I paid for.  The time I had to just be me and do the things I wanted to do were often lost and I came back from the vacation feeling more tired than when I left.  I was lucky that the two little ladies got along famously and gave me a chance to do so things that were high on my to-do list like read and sleep.  In having a chance to have someone along who shared the same interest as my daughter I was released from my normal vacation duties of always playing piggy back in the water and watching endless cartoons in the room so I got a chance to do things when I genuinely wanted to instead of when I felt I needed to.

Traveling in pairsPerhaps what is the best feature of shared vacations is that you really get more of the balance that leaves everyone with a little bit better memories.  My daughter got a chance to just be a kid and let loose while I had a chance to be myself and do more of the things that relaxed and satisfied me.  These options freed up the time to meet in the middle and do things both alone and in a group that brought all of us closer together.  While we may have a chance to experience High Tea as a group and share and laugh together, my daughter and I also had opportunities to talk and share just the two of us, which is equally important to me.  It is crucial to remember as adults and especially as parents that if we only develop one role (such as parent) and neglect the others (such as person) we are still missing out on some of the best things we can get from our lives.  Even worst this neglect can result in actually doing worst at the things we value the most, when you are your best you then you can be better at everything else you set your mind to.


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