…advice to us…
After 225 days of travel, we are looking homeward now. It’s been quite a journey. And though I don’t know exactly what we dreamed it would be, it surpassed any dreams we may have had. We saw beautiful, magical places. We ate all kinds of fantastic and unique foods. We traveled by plane, car, commuter train, night train, subway, camel, ferry boat, long boat, elephant, horse, tram, cable car and by foot. We met people. We met so many kind, helpful, funny, entertaining, gentle, smart, compelling, interesting, and wonderful people, it blows the mind. Most importantly, we spent time together. We learned together, we grew together, we talked to each other, we argued some, and we cuddled a lot. We gained a new perspective of both the world and who we are as a family.
So now, I venture to give some advice to our family as a reminder of why this journey has been so important to us. This is what I hope stays with us as it all fades into a happy memory.
To the girls: You MUST have adventures. It is such a vital part of living, and the easiest, hardest, most fun, most challenging way to grow. When I say adventure, I don’t mean you must go gallivanting around the world, though I heartily support that option. No, an adventure is doing anything that makes you say, “That is REALLY cool, and I’m a little scared to try it.” Maybe it is learning to speak Swahili. Or starting a community service project. Maybe it is speaking in front of your school, or submitting a poem to a contest. Maybe you decide to try rock climbing, or go to trapeze school. Whatever your adventure is, it must come from your heart, and personally, I think it should include a moment when you think, “Oh my goodness, what am I doing??!!” before you dive headlong into something new and exciting.
To me and Per: We MUST have adventures too. There is nothing that makes us feel quite so alive as stepping outside our comfort zone. It is especially wonderful when we can do it together. It also gives us the opportunity to appreciate all the good things in our lives.
To the four of us: We will all have our ups and downs. Life isn’t always easy, but it truly is beautiful. If nothing else comes from this journey, we know that we can count on each other. Let’s learn new things together, support each other, and have fun. Let’s do our best to lead with compassion. And if all else fails, remember what Baba David says… ‘Hakuna Shida’.
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