Travel While You Can!

The half-way point is in the rear-view and every week we are getting a little bit closer to D-Day. Since we didn’t make the trip home for Christmas, we figured that we would head for a visit in January before this kid got too big. At the 31 week mark, we figured it couldn’t be that bad, especially since I had a much bigger trip planned for the end of this whole thing, might as well test the waters.

Aside from the ridiculously long travel day, I think things went alright. Not sure what on earth was going on in the world of turbulence, but it was definitely a rocky road…or sky. I had small child duty with the little one next to me. She is such a seasoned traveler that it didn’t even phase her as long as she could watch Trolls, she was solid. The same can not be said for the poor lady behind us.

On the way down on our first flight, it was pretty darn bumpy…more than I am used to, that is for sure. Ultimately, it was just prolonged, but there was one really hard jolt and the entire situation had this poor lady in a panic behind us. She was holding onto her husband with a death grip and crying.  I felt so bad for her. It did NOT help that I had a crazy little one next to me that thought the entire thing was fun. “Weeeeee, weeeee!” Yep…can’t just sit their quietly watching her movie while our fellow passengers are in panic mode. I felt so horrible, but I guess my kid having fun in a slightly scary situation is better than her losing her crap.

We made it to my mom’s and we were all exhausted. I just assumed it was the fact that we were on the road since 4 that morning and the whole going up and down two times back to back, but I was grumpy and my feet were killing me, which made no sense since I was off my feet the majority of the time. Then I took off my socks and saw something interesting. It looked as if I had surgery on both my feet because they were huge! My wife walked into the room at which point I mentioned “so that’s new…” and her eyes got just as big. We had one blood pressure check out of whack the week before and it pushed the anxiety level up slightly, so another change was another concern. I figured it would go away the next day, or at least hoped so.

Like every trip home, we had a packed full schedule to visit as many people as we could. We had an aquarium date with our friend and her kids. Our little one was super pumped. Not only does she get to see the fishies, but she gets to hang out with her peeps too!

The kids had us running all around, pointing out whatever Finding Nemo character they happen to recognize at any given time. As my daily step count had increased exponentially, my feet were killing me and then I had this whole shortness of breath thing. Seriously? I survived this whole thing so far without any major issues, and now they were trying to sneak up on me all at once. This was crap. I figured I just needed a rest and it would be all good.

We went to the play area and let the children run free. I found the closest bench to sit on and got off my feet with a giant sigh. Go to the aquarium, that is surely a stress-free trip.  My mind hadn’t actually caught up to the difference of being back in civilization until my unsolicited conversation with the dude next to me. “You look tired,” he said, which is the thing on the top of everyone’s fun to hear list. “Yeah, my feet are not being cooperative, I just need a rest.” “Well, chasing after kids will do that to you,” and he carried on with his actual friend about how his in-laws were upset that his kid was learning Arabic, and something about bikes. It was clear that this dude had a much more lavish lifestyle than this small town cop, and I wasn’t quite sure why he felt like pausing his conversation for me.  Especially when it was to essentially tell me that I looked as crappy as I was feeling.  Thanks bro.

At first I was distracted by the Arabic thing as I thought about how useful that would be, but then realized that the majority of my reasons were military related and he probably wouldn’t appreciate those possibilities for his 3 year old…Then I was thinking about his comment to me. When I looked in the mirror, I was obviously pregnant. Further to that, I was wearing a sweater that said Pardon My Bump because it was my wife’s favorite; however, I forgot that the general population still thinks I am just a fat dude. In fact, I bit my tongue a few times already that morning due to looks I was getting in the bathroom.  Apparently the skin tight maternity shirts are a requirement in civilization.

Now, I don’t know if it was the fact that I was tired and grumpy or if it was my body’s attempt at giving into these pregnancy hormone things, but once I put two and two together (which was admittedly as slow as a turtle sprint), I was actually kind of annoyed. *Disclaimer: I don’t get mad very often so getting annoyed with a rando is the equivalent of being flat out pissed.* There was a part of me that wanted to stop the highly pretentious conversation that flowed next to me and point out that I was fabricating life as we spoke! And who was making miracles happen? Oh Yeah, this chick! But then I realized that I would just sound like a crazy person and no one really cared anyway. Add that to the list of times that I realized how little credit women get for having kids. This wasn’t instant rice I was cooking here! Luckily this vet made use of some combat breathing and the crazy level subsided.  Buddy left and I shared my story with my friend who came and sat next to me.  We had our little vent session and then worked up enough energy to keep this party train going.

After convincing the kids that the stingrays were sleeping and the outside area was closed due to rain, we were able to sneak out alive with a food offering.  Yeah we lied to the kids…don’t judge.  They have seen those things tons of times and will see them again.  Our mental health on the other hand is a priority!  All parents do it, and if they say otherwise, then they are lying about lying!  Deal with it.

After all was said and done and we were on our way home, I decided that this was a horrible idea to travel.  My non-prego stubbornness had found quite the competitor in the stubbornness of the child that now apparently controlled me.  You win this one Skeletor, but I will not be defeated so easily!  I still had two trips on the horizon, one across the country at week 36/37, that I was determined to go on.  It was interesting enough that my stomach moves like a completely separate entity, I didn’t need it controlling my day to day life.  At least not yet!  I already have a four year old trying to that, and this one will be doing the same when it pops out.  It would be nice to control my own actions until them.  Not ringing the bell today!  No, instead I had to focus on deflating these damn feet.

…yeah, within a couple weeks those other trips were cancelled…will I ever be my own person again???


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