Baby Bags and Luggage Tags
Before i had my daughter, I was always on the go. Exploring sleepy towns...Yes! Partying in big cities...Yes! Accumulating stamps on my passport...Hell Yes! Then I unexpectedly became pregnant and wow did I fear my carefree lifestyle would end. After a few years in the game, I can say I'm blessed to still travel, though not as much and definitely not as freely. Trust me though, when I say you too can still travel. My mellow big brother told me early into motherhood, if not before, not to feel guilty about still traveling and enjoying myself guilt free as a mom. That stuck with me because I think we put too much pressure on ourselves to always be there, even if we aren't present (because in our minds we're chilling on a beach with a fruity drink in our hands, HA!). So while still pregnant, I planned my first trip away from my baby to the NBA all-star weekend. I called on grandparents and they eagerly agreed to babysit. I ensured I had my pumping plan down and set off on my adventure. After sleeping like a baby (pun intended) on that trip, I was convinced I could and still would find a way to travel. Since that 4 month post-partum trip, I've been to Austin, Dallas, Hawaii, Cancun, Arizona, Vegas, NYC, Cayman Islands, Dubai, Italy and Australia without the kiddo, just to name a few places. Ive even taken the little one on some fun trips that I couldn't imagine attending without her: Puerto Rico, New Orleans (including the French Quarters after dark) and California's wine country ironically.
The point is you can still "go" even after you become a parent. The key is to make it a priority in your budget (allocate less funds for frivolous activities and meals) and your time (stop over committing!). I also recommend starting as soon as you bring your little one home. Although you're on the baby's schedule in terms of sleep, your travel schedule in the beginning is all yours. That means no PTA meetings, soccer practices, dance recitals or school calendars to plan around. Those first few years before first grade are prime for impromptu trips. Take advantage of that free time and keep exploring. When they start school it may become challenging, but just plain around or during it. I know children are a blessing, but hey so are frequent flyer miles. #Doulasoul #HuntsvilleDoulas #DoulasOfColor #AlabamaDoulas