Sitting on a bus listening to Colombian music on the way to Cartagena airport for our final trip home. Our plan had been eleven countries on four continents. We ended at 28 countries on six continents. Life happens. My dream has always been to see the world and I have done that, but I hope it doesn’t ever truly stop.
Lots of people asked us before we left why we didn’t wait until the kids were out of the house. I can emphatically say that traveling with kids enhanced our travels immeasurably. I try to be self-aware but it is always easier to see change in someone else and the children we are coming home with are different people. People who are more culturally aware, gastronomically adventurous, linguistically capable, and just independent. Two years of homeschooling on our travels broadened their education in a way that could never have happened from the US. And I can confidently say that they are ready to return to the classroom with no deficits.
And what about the adults in the family? Well, it is scary to step out of your life for a couple years. We sold almost everything we owned, gave up our daily jobs, and hit the road. There, we discovered a confidence that we didn’t know we had. We have made friends all over the world and confirmed our suspicion that there are good people everywhere. Our journey has been full of moments of great joy and intense frustration. We learned about what questions to ask, how people live, how to roll with unexpected situations, how to manage change, and to appreciate the little things in life.
So what are we coming back to? Carver was accepted into a program called the Davidson Academy in Reno, NV so we are moving there. It will allow him to learn at the accelerated pace that he needs while being with kids his own age. Syarra will be attending a full-time gifted school that seems to truly understand the importance of challenging kids while being flexible enough to support their needs. We hope that being with kids their own ages will allow them to make lifelong friends. And Erich and I are looking for jobs, hopefully ones that will allow us to continue to travel when time allows. All of us will continue to enjoy telling our stories and sharing our perspective.
It is with mixed feelings that we return to the States. The politics aren’t what we prefer and what we left behind and we worry that we will feel stagnant. However, we look forward to getting to buy the big bottle of ketchup without knowing that we will have to throw it out when we move on in a few weeks. The US has a level of convenience that is uncommon in this world and will probably be easy to slip back in to. We are looking forward to settling in a part of the country that is new to us and we plan to take full advantage of this different adventure. Our door is always open to any of our friends, family, and readers.