How Home Feels
It felt better than expected to go home, inasmuch as we couldn’t wait to escape it when we left.
We really had no choice but to return, but like I said earlier, we were still semi crushed.
Not crushed like one feels when there has been, say, a death or a major loss, and shoot, we’ve been through worse in the past 6 months, alone.
Crushed like, we had been organizing the trip for months, and this specific trip for weeks.
We carefully budgeted, planned, discussed and expended so much mental energy into every aspect of it.
Once we hit the road, it wasn’t a vacation.
Not at all.
For frigs sake, we decided to go on an extended tent camping trip with three kids.
It was 24/7 around the clock WORK.
It was like taking our life and bringing it in a road trip.
Eventually, we felt that the energy was worth it to wake up to birds singing and having breakfast together. The towering pines and palmetto fans were so welcoming and green that it was all worthwhile. The Florida springs were amazing and almost daily scouting for wildlife was super fun.
When bedtime was finally done (hopefully by 11:00pm), and all kids were definitely sleeping, Eric and I would make coffee (approximately 5x we traded the coffee for red wine sangria), and sit by the fire. Only a handful of nights we didn’t do this, maybe because it had just finished downpouring or we didn’t have the energy, whether it be firewood or our own fuel.
We’d take 30-90 minutes and enjoy the breeze, or the sounds of nature around us.
I’d write the blog post for the next day, Eric would be researching something or other, and we’d chain smoke in the only free, quiet time we had.
If the cards fell right, we’d double check the weather, make sure all food, garbage and coolers were stowed away safely, and crawl into bed, after locking the tent up and double checking the kids. Then we’d be able to talk before falling asleep.
We really only had what we needed. The only electricity was at the bathhouses and at the power inverter in the truck. Running water at spigots around the campground.
There is something incredibly grounding about sleeping under the stars.
I used to despise the idea of tent camping and thought tent campers were crazy.
How could you put yourself in such a vulnerable position? I would think, imagining all the bad things that could happen when you only had a thin piece of nylon between you and the outside world.
Then, finally, I did it. I’ll never forget the moment and how it felt looking through the open screen at the sky above.
This is not the end.
Not a chance. In fact, it’s only the beginning.