“Travelling in the company of those we love is home in motion”.

– Leigh Hunt

I love to travel. I love the sights that unfold around me, seen for the very first time through my eyes, through my perspective. I love the sounds that come from the bustling of busy lives that surround me. I love the richness of other cultures that welcome strangers to their shores.

I believe I would travel far and wide and never stay long in one place if I had my way. I always wanted my children to have that wandering spirit. To have wondrous adventures before planting roots. Perhaps they will…one day.

This, we believed, would be our last year to have a family vacation. A chance to spend it together and celebrate so many milestones…. Ryan’s 21st, Jordyn’s 18th, her graduation, my mom’s 70th and my parents 50th wedding anniversary.

The look on their faces when Scott and I told them our plans is a memory that will forever be etched in my mind. Pure delight and sheer excitement tinged with disbelief.

Our trip is upon us. I struggle daily with thoughts of going vs staying. I never thought we would be here. I never thought I would have to make such a heartrending decision. How can I feel peace?

What helps …..

Searching continues in our absence by some of the most amazing people to walk this earth. Our friends and family have encouraged us to honour these plans. For us and for our daughters.

Our girls have been without us for so long, and endured so much. Without complaint. Without blame. With so much love and understanding. I yearn to spend time with them alone. As a family.

But not in the way we were suppose to. That I cannot do.

I know I need to go with all my heart. My girls deserve that. I just don’t know if I can promise that.

I carry pieces of Ryan everywhere I go. In my breath, my cherished memories and in the faces of my husband and our daughters. This trip will be no different.

Charms with words that say, “ love, hope, faith, truth, story, wander and travel” will be engraved with Ryan’s initials. We shall leave them everywhere. Perhaps, someone will find these charms and the power of the words and the love we have shown will be transformational.

“Two of the greatest gifts we can give our children are roots and wings.”

– Hodding Carter.

I pray I do both.