Things I Learned On My Vacation

Family time is fabulous. Being together 24/7 really is a treat. No responsibilities for David. No chores for me. No school for the kids. Just together. Loved it.

Family time sometimes brings out the worst in us. There was one time at the Peter Pan ride when I questioned our sanity. There was another time one of our kids was in such a funk they threatened to run away. I wish I could tell you that announcement devastated me. It didn't. (I think it's important that you know our family is not perfect, we are not all cute photos and smiles. We screw up. We bug each other. But we're in it together, whether we like it or not.)

I cherished every single moment I had with Carver. I don't know if we'll ever do a Disney trip again, but if we do, he'll be older and won't want to spend the entire day with us. He'll probably run off by himself and meet up with us at different times during the day. I know that time is coming, so I savored each and every minute we were together. There was one day he held my hand. Quite possibly for the last time. When else will we be somewhere--at his age--where he will feel comfortable enough to reach up and hold my hand?

I was relieved Carver was still 11 and not 15 or 18. Why? Boobs. Boobs everywhere. Spring break and teenage girls = boobs. Plus add in all the older women who were still trying to dress like they're 18. Yeesh. A note to other mothers of girls: make your daughters dress discreetly. It did NOT help that toward the end of the week there was a National Cheerleading Competition in Anaheim and there were mobs of ditsy girls with (you guessed it) boobs. I can't speak for David, but I've seen enough boobs to last a lifetime.

My kids must have gills. They swam every day. For hours. They swam even when it was late at night and they were exhausted. They couldn't resist it. And David and I couldn't help but give in.

Flying home was a little easier than flying out to CA. I bet if I flew once a week I wouldn't mind flying at all. It's the years in between each flight that do me in. And I don't mind take-offs or landings. I hate turbulence. Hate them. White-knuckle all the way. We returned home late, late, late on Saturday, and all day on Sunday I felt like I had a horrible hangover... which given all the drugs I took I pretty much did have a hangover.

I forget that we get stared at. A lot. I forget that our family looks different to others. I'm used to getting second looks and getting noticed when we go out as a family, but at a place like Disneyland we turn heads all day long. We also get the "pity" look. The "oh, they couldn't have any children of their own so they had to adopt" look. Or the "oh, how sweet... they adopted a bunch of black children." Their assumptions are wrong, but when you're fighting the crowds to ride Buzz Lightyear for the 8 millionth time you don't have time to explain your family or even glare back in a "leave us alone" look.

We are not the only family that looks like us. I saw at least 6 other families that were carbon copies of ours. Seeing that melted my heart. Absolutely melted my heart.

(*Because Blogger is out to make my life miserable, it is not letting me upload photos right now. You're secretely relieved that you don't have to look at any more of our vacation pictures, aren't you?)


Mama Papaya said...

Sometimes I think I might be insulated because of my lack of a spouse. People make quick assumptions that spare us the stare or at least limit it to a raised eyebrow of judgment. Sigh.

So glad you had a grand time. Sounds like you won't be going again though until the boys are wed?

Welcome back.

jayme said...

So glad that you had a fabulous time together! And your story about Carver holding your hand brought tears to my eyes. I keep wishing my kids would grow up just a little bit faster, but then these sorts of posts remind me of how little time we actually have. Thanks for that.