You hold your beautiful gold Coach clutch in your hand, and stroak the soft leather surface. It represents dressy outings with girlfriends – you tossing your head back as it dangles off your wrist, complimenting the glass of wine you hold in your opposite hand. Now imagine you take a moment to unzip this fabulous little bag. The bag that has always held your lip gloss, money, ticket stubs, and credit cards. The bag that has always promised epic outings, nights of grown up fun, and stories that you tell a million times afterwards. You unzip the wristlet, and inside you discover…a diaper and a packet of baby wipes as its only contents.
It sounded so romantic at first, frolicking on the beaches of Mexico, my children building sand castles as I lay basking in the sun. Someone bringing me cold beers as my children giggle and take turns thanking me for the best time ever. Days exploring the cruise ship, munching on fine delicacies and sipping on pina coladas while my little ones enjoy hours of fun at the Kids Camp. Like a perfect little Coach clutch, this trip promised fantastic things.
|This happened – while I was pinned under a crying toddler|
While it was fun, it definitely wasn’t the picture I had painted in my mind. My children didn’t want to go to Kids Camp (and trust me, we tried everything to convince them otherwise), instead opting for 24 hours a day with mommy and daddy. When we arrived at the beach, my toddler didn’t want anything to do with the sand or water, instead opting for a seat on my lap – sun tan? Fuh-get about it. And on the trip home, my toddler threw up in the airport all over me and himself, and neither of us had a change of clothes. When we boarded the plane home, we discovered that the airline had seated us separately from our children, so I rode the entire 3 hour flight with a puke-covered toddler on my lap. Diaper and wipes, my friends.
We were very fortunate to have been treated to a fabulous family getaway. A group of twelve of us travelled to Long Beach, and boarded a Carnival cruise that took us to Cabo San Lucas and Puerto Vallarta. A 7-day adventure. It was so wonderful to spend time with my family, to enjoy each other’s company outside of the twice-a-year Christmas dinners and Thanksgiving get togethers that prompted visits in the past.
We did explore the ship and all the ammenities it had to offer. We enjoyed some time on the beach, and even had a photo with dolphins. We enjoyed fine dining every night, and even some evening shows. But woven into those precious moments were drawn-out toddler temper tantrums, mommy meltdowns, and not a moment’s rest.
Travelling with children isn’t a breeze, it isn’t romantic, and it definitely is NOT relaxing. But we had some good clean family fun, and I’m sure we’ve created some special moments that will live in our children’s memories forever.
And the Coach clutch? It was used. While its only contents throughout the trip were a diaper and a package of wipes, it looked fabulous on the outside, and kept the frustrations of motherhood tucked neatly in its interior. Just like the mama who wore it dangling from her wrist, complimenting the toddler hanging onto her opposite arm.