Now, more of a real secret.
Years ago, I gave up on my dreams of travel. I think once the twins were born, and the cost of life doubled, I put my desire to see the world, on a very dusty back shelf. I watched as friends and family traveled to far off places like England, France, Italy, Iceland, Holland, South America, and Turkey. I looked at their pictures, I listened to their stories, and while I was happy for them, I was sad for me.
Around the time that I was pregnant with CJ, I fell in love with a poem by Anne Campbell called To My Child. My friend, Karen, knew I liked the poem and framed it for me. It sits on my dresser. Here is a stanza:
You are the trip I did not take;
You are the pearls I cannot buy;
You are my blue Italian lake;
You are my piece of foreign sky.
I find peace and comfort in the words because they remind me that my children are so much more precious than any place I could visit...and they are worth any sacrifice.
And now. Now, because of living in a third world country, my prospect of travel has changed.
Tomorrow our family will board a plane to go to Italy. For one week we will tour the Tuscan country side and visit Florence and Pisa. Then we head to Rome for a week where we will meet my parents. There we will explore the Colosseum and the Vatican and eat lots of Gelato. From there, the kids and I fly to England where we will stay with friends who live an hour outside of Oxford. (Just typing these words seems absolutely surreal).
To think that I get to see this...
And explore this...
When I try to wrap my mind around it, I get all weepy. Weepy with overwhelming gratitude.
And it is no secret that I am counting down the hours to a dream coming true - a dream that I had parked on that dusty back shelf years ago.
There is something truly sweet about the full circle idea that it will be with my children and dear husband that I will finally get to see my Italian landscape and experience my bit of foreign sky.
Italy...here we come.