World (East Coast) Travelers

I could use this time to vent about my rampant-running emotions these days, upcoming decisions, and my permanently "lost" state of mind, but ya know what? I don't feel like it.

So instead I would like to point out the fact that my daughter, in her 5 months and 3 days lifespan, has been on 14 planes. You read that right, FOURTEEN. While the majority of our travels have been for very, very somber reasons, it still blows me away what a seasoned traveler my little Princess is. Two to Delaware, 2 home from Delaware, 2 to Florida, 2 home from Florida, 2 to Florida again, 2 home again and this time 2 to Baltimore. On Saturday she will have another one as we're going to New England on a little mini vacation and then one more when we fly back to Baltimore. What a little jet setter! She travels so well, too, Thank God! The worst flights were the ones back from Florida the second time, she was soo worn out and screamed the majority of each flight, but besides those, she's usually a happy little traveler. I think she's got her own airport routine down.

And momma's getting an airport routine as well. I can navigate airport terminals in a stroller like I was born doing it. Today we got from one end of Charlotte to the other in 20 minutes flat! I've learned how to change diapers on the plane, feed in flight, pee with a baby in my lap in the tiny airplane bathrooms, and a multitude of other airport sauve tricks of the trade.

Being a "single mom" is not anything I ever asked for. Sure, I'd planned it in small(ish) doses as a Marine Wife and knew I'd be taking on the roll of both mom and dad at points, it's not anything I actually thought would be my permanent situation. However, the single parent journey is not staring at me so frighteningly, as I see I can hold down the fort, even while traveling. I think I make my babe very proud in knowing that he chose a good woman to raise his daughter if anything were to ever happen to him, someone who could step up and take on the challenge.

I remember when he was in Afghanistan, it was during our last call we ever got actually, after I'd been in North Carolina only a few days, doing the 'single parent' thing for the first time ever. I said to him, Babe this 'single parent' thing is really hard. He said to me something about not saying I was a 'single parent,' that I wouldn't be 'single parenting' for much longer. I told him I know I'm not, I'm just doing it alone right now and it feels that way, and it's hard but I can do it.

Thinking on that conversation crushes my heart, because I wasn't supposed to be a 'single parent' for much longer, my partner in parenting, life, love, all things, was supposed to be home soon. But now, with the cards our family has been dealt, I am left a single mother. I look back on the conversation and at that time. I was terrified to go to NC by myself with a tiny babe, I had no idea what I would do if... (insert me sick, her sick, both of us sick, she won't eat, she won't poop, etc. etc.) and I know I have come a long way, as a parent, from then. I wish upon wish every single day that I didn't have to, but being this is my only choice I am going to do the very best that I can, and seeing how far I have come as a mom, it's not as scary as it once was. Here's to hoping this mind set stays and I can continue down the journey of single parenting with an optimistic eye...


PS Please excuse my run-ons and excessive comma use in this post, it's late, I've been traveling all day, and I'm exhausted. Ok, disclaimer over.

25 comments

  1. I thought it was perfect. I am sure your mind goes a mile a minute with thoughts and what if's. Your blog is so real.. and I hope that is helping some what in the healing process. =)

    My thoughts are always with you and you beautiful little girl.

    ReplyDelete
  2. You are an awesome mommy! Never forget that :)

    ReplyDelete
  3. I'm so proud of you doing an awesome job on the Single Parenting thing. In fact I'm Proud, your such an Amazing Women. I thought it was hard making one trip on the airplane (well 2 different airplanes each way) for our vacation with three kids. I couldn't imagine all the times you have flown with a newborn. Great Job, :)

    ~Alicia

    ReplyDelete
  4. Hey! I have a blog award for you! Come visit my page and check it out! :)
    http://reflectionsofanavywife.blogspot.com/

    ReplyDelete
  5. I love this post! Excessive comma and run-ons included! I am proud of you, and I'm glad you're proud of yourself.

    I believe Ari needs her own Pan-Am bag.... (like this! http://www.shoebuy.com/pan-am-explorer/224622/484160?cm_mmc=frooglelist-_-none-_-none-_-nones lol)

    I hope you got some good sleep and are able to enjoy your mini-vacation!

    ReplyDelete
  6. Man she's got my son beat. Although at 9 he's become a seasoned traveler as well having to bounce back and forth for visitations.

    It's not an easy task being a "single" parent but you'll get through it. I was one for other reasons and while we had some nasty rock bottoms; I was always able to draw on my kids for the strength to keep going. Now that my oldest is almost 12, she makes little comments about proud she is of me and how I got her through those times. Those smiles and her hugs make my pain and struggles worth it. There will be so many times when you think you can't do something by yourself and find that really it's just you and you HAVE to do it. But when it's over, you'll look back, smile, and say you did it.

    You can do it sweetie. I promise. You have made it this far and you will make it even further.

    ReplyDelete
  7. What a jet setter! I know how exhausting traveling ALONE can be. Props to you that you can do it WITH a baby :D

    always thinking of you!

    ReplyDelete
  8. I think you are very strong and you have a good heart. Nobody ever expects any of this to happen...in the military there is always that possiblity that you keep tucked in the very back of your mind but you never think it will turn into reality. I think your husband is proud of you and he is looking down on you and your daughter with a smile I am sure :) You are doing great trying to see the positive and going about each day as it comes. :)

    ReplyDelete
  9. Okay, I've commented before but they've been flippant. This one isn't :)

    He would be SO stinkin proud of you. He's looking down on you right now and you're not alone. He's watching you, and your little girl, and he's there for everything you're going through, whether you feel him there or not. When you have those days where you just CANNOT stop thinking about him, he's thinking about you too.

    I don't know you personally, and I never knew your husband, but from what I've read you two were an awesome team. You still are, you're Ariana's caregiver and mommy, and he's her angel. With both of you your little girl is gonna grow up to be awesome and amazing.

    How can she not with such amazing parents as the two of you?

    ReplyDelete
  10. I think its incredible the outlook you have. Excessive commas aside, you're inspiring :)

    ReplyDelete
  11. I remember when my daughter was little I had taken her on several airplanes as well. It's funny how adaptable the little ones are. By the time she was a year and a half she would sit and read the "safety card" along with the flight attendant and often times the passengers couldn't hear the flight attendant over Little Butt's babbling!

    ReplyDelete
  12. That is a lot of traveling for such a little girl, but it sounds like she behaves for you most of the time. That's all you can really ask of her, right? ;)

    Have fun on your vacation!

    ReplyDelete
  13. I have so much respect for single moms (and dads). You are doing a great job!

    ReplyDelete
  14. You will get through this, not only because you must, but because you are one hell of a woman and you CAN. Your Jonny is proud of you and so are we. {{{{Hugs}}}}from a Soldiers' Angel in Colorado

    ReplyDelete
  15. I've been reading your blog for a while, but I've never commented because you are such an inspiration to me...i feel somehow inadequate as to say anything that would mean something to you. But I wanted you to know that this post in particular has touched me, and I'm proud of you. And I know that your husband,looking down on you, is too.

    Jen @ www.fletcherswife.blogspot.com

    ReplyDelete
  16. umm how do you change a diaper on a plane? and also, without trying to sound condescending, i am SO proud of the momma you are. you're seriously amazing with her. i couldnt do half the things you do.

    -Shan D

    ReplyDelete
  17. Rachel, I just want to say that you're a great mom, it's amazing how you're able to care for your daughter while going through all the pain and suffering. I admire the way you write about her, the way you write about your husband and even though I never met him, nor you, I am sure that he's very proud of you and when Ariana is old enough she'll be very proud and very thankful for your loving care!

    I hope you have a great trip and please keep us posted:)

    ReplyDelete
  18. Oh Rachel, I can only imagine how difficult it must be. It sounds like you do such a great job with Ariana, and I know Jonny is proud of how well you handle it. It's not an easy task but you are an amazingly strong woman.

    ReplyDelete
  19. WOW!! I am 40 and haven't been on an airplane but 2 times!! hehe!! I know she will grow up and love to travel!! You are such an inspiration to all mothers!! Enjoy your trip...Blessings from Georgia!!

    ReplyDelete
  20. Best of luck on keeping yourself optimistic, you're handling this better than I would be. You're a great mom and a wonderful wife, keep up the good work!! :)

    ReplyDelete
  21. I was a single parent for the first 3 years of Cam's life, although the reason was very different - you see I left my x husband when Cam was 8 weeks old b/c he was abusive.

    The point is, that once you realize (which you have) that you can do it..it only get's easier.

    It's different from my situation, I know you have grief, I had a stalker (LOL - I laugh but is't true), you can do this - you're a great mom!

    ReplyDelete
  22. I know being a single parent is not what you wanted, but you are doing such a fantastic job.
    AND ps. I saw your other post in reader-where in NH are you visiting? I hope you enjoyed the beautiful weekened weather we had! :)
    ANd, I feel the same way as you lots of times (what you wrote in the other post) and I dont even have the same reasons for feeling that way. Dont worry about offending people. :)) Have fun!

    ReplyDelete
  23. I'm proud of you. :)
    your so amazing, keep doing what your doing, i know your making him smile everyday!

    ReplyDelete

Please feel free to leave a thought with me!

 

Copyright © 2014 | Designed by: Broken Road Creative