anxiety, motivation, simple life

The Dread of Leaving on Vacation

I don’t know why but I always feel this heaviness in my heart when I have to get ready to leave on vacation. Even if it is just for a long weekend and just a couple hours away.

I am comfortable to just stay home. I have my gardens here, my piano and my sewing workroom. I have my books and all the things I need just within an arms reach or a short walking distance.

When I have to prepare to go on vacation I get anxiety over the littlest things. I have to make a list. I must pack, decide what to wear, what to bring. Prepare for things we will do.

What must I take care of before I go? Stop the mail, water the plants, tidy up the house. What? Yes, I don’t like to leave dirty dishes. Trash too must be emptied, my bed must be made and the laundry finished.

I am not a list maker, but my husband and I decided long ago, we need this for trips. We forget things otherwise. Sometimes we forget to look at the list before we leave out the door. We have learned to leave slowly….stop and think before we drive off. “Do we have everything?” We ask each other…..”Let’s think.” We pause, and once satisfied, we can go.

I am learning to prepare better so I am less anxious. I am learning to try to enjoy each step I have to make to prepare. I am feeling less the martyr about it in my head….feeling this is “so much work”! I now say…I will do what I must do and what I hate to do first. I must bring food…is all the shopping done. Silly though…there are stores nearby. I just don’t want to find myself doing much cooking when on vacation although we have a cabin.

My husband likes to go. He loves making lists and running errands. Hi took care of any groceries or drinks we need to bring. (I just thought of one thing I need to do….make ice.)
He is the happy traveler. I am content to just be a rock that does not roll.

In the Strong’s Hebrew translation, commit means “to roll”, “roll away”.
In order to roll you must be moving. Going on vacation for me is always a commitment.
It is hard but not like some other things we do and I am sure I am in the minority and wish I could get excited about a vacation.

We traveled to Italy over five years ago now and I only felt numb. Honestly, I was dreading it for the most part. Did we do the right thing to spend all this money? UGH! Until we got to Venice and Tuscany and the town of Florence, the rest was just a lot of work. My anxiety did not help. I tried to be pleasant.

The tour guide was strict so we couldn’t really let our hair down. The tour was exceptional though. Top of the line. Our group was small and our bus was the most comfortable. The people friendly even though I didn’t know anyone. Too many tourists.

I was pleasant but just out of my comfort zone. Our husband and I were new at such an extravagant travel experience. My camera was going all the time. A big mistake. I should have just enjoyed the views. Post cards have what I need.

The lasagna and risotto were amazing! I’m not a wine drinker, and I’m a former Catholic, so that may have helped some, to have a greater experience. It is a sad testament, I know. I get more excited visiting a town like Galina, Illinois to see Grant’s historical sites and the town itself.

I like things on a smaller scale whether it be towns or the number of folks I need to contend with. I actually enjoy a walk with a good friend or a cup of tea on my patio with a neighbor. It brings me as much joy as an expensive trip to see the Colliseum in Rome. I know, I must be crazy, right? I love a canoe paddle on the St. Croix river, which we will be enjoying soon. Just my husband and I…I can’t wait!

This long weekend we are going with the entire family to a nice resort. It is our Christmas gift to all our children and grandchildren from last year. Three of the six families will be going. It will be so much fun, even if it rains. They have both indoor and outdoor pools, restaurants and such that all will be open. The families will have their own private rooms so what is there for me to be dreading?

Just the unknown gives my a bit of anxiety. I am never thrilled when a trip involves more than just my husband and I. I guess there is that too. I love our road trips we make occasionally to some small town in USA or some out of the way place that is historical. We both love history, hiking, old book stores and museums.

I am preparing for this trip differently and it seems to help. I have taken care of the important things first, that I need to do before I go. All my gardens have been watered and I enjoyed some weeding. This time out doors replenishes me and I know I took care of myself mentally and emotionally this way.

I made a big batch of spaghetti sauce to share for a meal when we are all together, but it is optional. I insisted on no schedules. People all get to do what they want, when they want and with whomever they want. It will be a time to relax for me even though there will be a lot of activity around.

Later today, if not soon after I write this, I will make a big batch of monster cookies. In a way, they are a healthy snack with the oatmeal and peanut butter in them. There will be enough for everyone if they want to stop by our cabin. My husband already did the shopping for other treats and goodies we will need.

I like kids to have things to do and sometimes leaving things to the parents to pack does not always work. I think I will bring a big tote full of markers and paper, puzzles and board games, books and cards and things to entertain the little ones if they get bored in the evenings when the rest of the adults might want to visit.

I don’t want to bring too much or plan too much. I usually pack and then put half of the things I thought I would need away again. I over plan sometimes, when I don’t need to plan at all. I wanted to download photos to the photo frame we got for Christmas from one of the kids and bring it to set up in our cabin. Kids love looking at these photos flashing by, especially if it is one of them. I didn’t get this done yet, but the day is young although we leave tomorrow.

Anyway…..I hope we get some rain today and hope the weather is nice up north where we will be. Even if it isn’t though, it will be time with family well spent. We pray for safety and protection. We pray that all the family members get along. Nothing else is as important as that.

“Commit your way to the LORD, Trust also in Him, And He shall bring it to pass.” (Psalm 37:5)

“Cast all your anxiety on Him, because He cares for you.” (1Peter 5:7)

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