Read a blog this morning on 5 Things I Am Thankful For Because Of Travel and it touched me. The five things the author mentioned were: freedom, time, education, people, technology and memories (yes, I know there are more than 5…). Much of the time I believe that I do take these for granted. Lately, I have paid more attention to the people in my life and my gratefulness for them and our relationships. My mother is undergoing treatment for breast cancer and my childhood friend has recently started her treatment for the same. My stepbrother’s wife died of lung cancer last week after being diagnosed the week before Christmas – such a short time and I can’t imagine the thought and emotion knowing that I had just those few days left with my love. And I love her statement:
I am reminded of a lesson that was palpable when my grandmother passed some years ago. It hit me like a ton of bricks as I kissed her goodbye – nothing fits in the box with us on the way out. No one knows for sure what we take to the other side, if anything. At best, it’s our memories and our relationships.
On the topic of education, I have been very thankful for the opportunities provided to me to obtain an education and to have obtained a higher level education (my masters). It took a lot of sacrifice for many years of my life – during the hard times financially and during the hard times that it took away relaxation time from my schedule. Overall, I am proud of myself for the accomplishments. More than that, I am proud of my husband for being the first person in his family to obtain a college degree. The author of the blog, Jennifer Miller, notes that the school she and her family visited had only one book – the one that the teacher read from and the difference in our experience where we have a large amount of books just on our e-readers.
We have the freedom as Americans to enjoy traveling. At some point in our past a woman would not travel without a companion – either a male of family or marriage or a chaperone. Now, I can travel as I am willing on my time table.I am not afraid to travel alone and made the promise to myself when I was single (before I met my fabulous husband) that I would travel by myself because I did not want to miss out on those adventures for lack of a significant other to share it with. Now we travel together and we also still travel independently.
On the topic of time – wow! it’s moving fast! At 40 I was so excited to be passing into the next era of my life. At 44 I wonder what happened between 11:30pm on September 30, 2010 and today?!? My body has decided to rebel against life and is aging faster than I can keep up with! On another aspect of time I am cherishing the time with family,friends and generally trying to make sure that we enjoy the time we have.
What are you grateful for that you have learned to appreciate because of or as a result of travel?