All of the sudden, I can’t stop thinking about traveling again. For so very long it has been the furthest thing from my mind. But by the end of last week, the weekend, and now into the beginning of this week, I can’t stop imagining where’d we go first. I expected to feel this when I got my second vaccine dose. But instead, it took weeks. And in reality, I’m not sure it has anything to do with the vaccine specifically. Sure, knowing I could go somewhere is made easier by two scribbled lines that provide proof of two full jabs and a month of a cushion. There’s still a strange thrill when I realize I can wear my mask and not be afraid of public transportation. Just this weekend, the kids and I rode the bus together for the first time in over a year!
It sure is lovely to dream of a visit that helps sustain my relationship, without the looming fear of covid in me or in him (despite our negative tests). But I think the desire to travel lately is a bit deeper than that. I want to travel to reconnect to myself. I want to travel to feel what my body feels like in the air. I want to see the ground between the clouds. I want to have long evening conversations with my children about what they’ve learned and experienced.
I know that traveling is inherently a gift. It is one that I didn’t take for granted before and won’t in the near future. I love this city so much, but what is this place that calls me that I can not name? It surely isn’t Miami or Los Angeles (two places I am uninterested in). Maybe it’s Berlin when it opens again? Or France? In my dreams though, I see the colors of Lisbon and food devoured on street corners.
In the New York Times, clinical psychologist and senior director of Health Care Innovation at the American Psychological Association shared this about traveling, “It provides a much-needed break from the routines we’ve had to establish to survive the stress of the pandemic, and reminds us of all the vast beauty and humanity that exists outside the homes we’ve been isolating in since last March.”
My children are most excited to see their grandparents again, too. But that’s just a few hours drive away. When they ask me where would we go first, I say, “Wherever we can just be.”
How about you?