Thursday, July 4, 2013

16-Hour Road Trip -- Things I've Learned

A 16-hour road trip can be a great teacher. Here are some things I learned in our trip to Gulf Shores:

1 -- MeMaw's treats are ALWAYS right on point. (Who else would think to pack miniature marshmallows and a truckload of other goodies for a two-year-old? We needed every bit of them. You're tired, Brody? Have a Starburst. You're unhappy? Have an animal cookie.)

2 -- Peeing on the side of the road (not me...Brody) can be done in 45 seconds or less when you have a group of cars to catch ahead of you.

3 -- Within 15 minutes of the trip, your toddler will inevitably have to pee. (We had to stop in Rogersville, people.)

4 -- God is apparently teaching me to be vulnerable, as it has been hit hard in virtually every book I've read lately (How We Love, Damsels in Distress, and The Connected Child), in addition to a few discussions our group of friends have had. It's not like our friends pointed at me and said, "You need to be vulnerable," but we just discussed the fact that vulnerability is huge when it comes to support systems, true friendship and growth. God teaches in repetition, and for that reason I know I'm supposed to do something about it. I think vulnerability is cool and everything, but I'm just not that into it, so it will be difficult to actually follow through. This blog is about as vulnerable as I get, mostly because my verbal communication skills are so severely lacking I find it hard to fully express myself. The other day I tried to explain to someone that I learned I tend to be an avoider, but it took me four tries to spit that sentence out correctly. That's why I try not to talk much. So I guess I will work on being vulnerable here in order to help me be vulnerable in real life. (You know the web is not real life, right?)

5 -- On a related note, this is me being more vulnerable. I learned that I am an avoider because I've been reading How We Love, which Brad bought after a friend recommended it. What's it mean to be an avoider? It means I avoid emotions and pretend I don't have them until they are unavoidable. Really, I don't feel like I need emotions, but I suppose I'm wrong on that. I am also a pleaser. I like to please people, I avoid conflict and expressions of anger as often as possible, and I hate asking for help. Sounds like a fun combo, right? I will need to learn to be ok with emotions, even anger, in order to let others know me more deeply, and I'm actually still getting accustomed to that idea.

6 -- Back to the road trip, specifically...you will always need more wet wipes than you think.

7 --  Must--Have--Chocolate.

8 -- My husband is awesome for driving the whole way (over two days).

9 -- My long arms have, again, come in handy. I can reach all the way back to Brecken from my seat.

10 -- When a reach wasn't enough, I was thankful for my agility. I could whip around and propel myself to the backseat in 2.5 seconds. Thanks to my college track coach for training my fast-twitch muscles.

11 -- Packing a lunch and picnicking is WAY more fun than stopping at a fast food restaurant.

12 -- Our boys are REALLY good at road tripping, and hopefully that holds true on the way home.