About six months ago, I was at clinic for another one of my countless appointments when I lamented to my PA Abby that I couldn't even fathom the luxury of getting on a plane for a real vacation. At the time, something like that seemed so... well, ordinary, and there was nothing ordinary about my life anymore.
'You want to fly?' she asked. 'You can go. But you can't miss more than two velcade injections so plan carefully and remember to pay attention to how you feel.'
I kid you not, I almost started crying. Despite still fighting MM, I could do something I love the most and that was see the world.
And today we are in Copenhagen, Denmark! We arrived last night after a short visit to Paris. My girls wanted to see the Eiffel Tower so dang badly and so we did. Having spent a week in Paris, I can tell you, the Eiffel Tower is the least exciting and, perhaps, the most crowded and annoying part of the entire city. But we did it anyway. And we visited Sacre Couer (I think I spelled that wrong) and Notre Dame. And that is all we had time to see. Better than nothing.
And then we went back to the airport, hopped on another plane and arrived in Copenhagen last night. Today, while we could be exploring this lovely city in Northern Europe, we are resting up.
So while this trip isn't my typical crazy run around trip like I've done in the past, it is nonetheless an incredibly nice change of pace. I have huge limitations because of the medications I am on and the exhaustion I encounter. I am still immune compromised and need to be careful with every morsel of food I put in my mouth. But a cruise is exactly what I can do. I can see things at my own pace and if I'm having a particularly tough day, I don't have to leave my cabin. Yes, this is progress. (And, by the way, I have no intentions of staying in my cabin. Our ports of call include St Petersburg, Tallin Estonia, Berlin, Stockholm and Helsinki. I have visited all of them except Tallin and Berlin and I cannot wait to see every single one.
Travel is a huge part of my life. It always has been, it always will be. Traveling helps me keep life in perspective. It gives me a huge view of the world. It teaches me things I can never learn out of a book. Knowledge and experience and continual learning is so important to me and I hope to pass that along to my children. I never really knew how important it was until I lived with my ex husband for five years. He was the first guy I had dated in my entire life who, well, could not hold an intellectual conversation if his life depended on it. In fact, when he tried, it was painful to hear because it became so apparent that he was not very smart. Once I realized that, my quest to instill intellectual curiousity in my girls became ever more important.
And so with that, I think I'll go wake up the girls. Copenhagen is calling.