Sunday, May 15, 2011

Travel Lessons learned from MawMaw Boots.

I loved Curtis' Grandma. He called her MawMaw Boots. This was his Dad's mom...and if you know Curtis' Dad, you should know that his mom was just a female version of him. Funny as can be, could light up a room with her smile and big laugh, and had a heart as big as you could imagine. I loved every minute I got to spend with her.

Unfortunately, she is no longer with us.

When Lexi was 4 weeks old, we traveled to West Virginia so she could meet Lexi. We knew MawMaw Boots wouldn't be with us much longer. She was very sick, but still had a little life left in her.

One night, I volunteered to drive her up the hill to her son's house (they lived directly behind her on the same property, but she was too fragile to walk.) And as we drove, she looked at me and said how much she appreciated us making the trip...knowing it wasn't easy on our family. Then she went on to talk about how traveling with your family is so important...and how those memories will last a lifetime. Her eyes were filled with so many memories, it was as if I was reliving them with her. She had 5 boys, so money wasn't always easy...and she said that. She said, "We didn't have a lot of money...but we always found a way to travel and be together." And then told me that we should always do the same. I promised her we would.

I think about that conversation a lot. Especially when friends tease us about going away all the time...or taking too many vacations. The truth is, I learned from MawMaw Boots and I learned from my parents and my in-laws, that getting away is sometimes the best thing you can do for your family. And it is in those moments, away from jobs, school, the house, chores, bills, and responsibilites...that memories can be made. Memories that were strong enough for MawMaw, whose mind was failing her, to remember with vivid clarity.

We made memories like that this weekend. And as I was sitting here thinking about them, my mind wandered back to my drive with MawMaw Boots nearly 5 years ago now. And I know we made her smile.


Dawn Nicole said...

That is such great advice. Thanks for sharing, Kristi. I know most of our best family memories have been on family vacations as well. So thrilled you guys are making that a priority.