Happily Even After
by Stacey Noem
At some point when Oscar was very young and we took road trips we began a small travel tradition. Whenever we approach a state line we say “aaaaadventure!!” pumping our fist forward just as we cross the border. It’s just a small way to make even short trips between Michigan and Indiana or Oregon and Washington a little more exciting. And as we take longer and longer road trips it helps to demarcate the stages of our journey.
Joshua and I have shared many adventures in our married life (geographic and otherwise). We have lived in number of states and even traveled abroad a bit. We have jumped out of airplanes, dangled over cliffs, and ridden in hot air balloons. All together.
We have also facilitated adventures for each other. I have stayed with children so Joshua could travel to Haiti, Minnesota Twins baseball games, and the Final Four basketball tournament. Likewise Joshua held down the fort as I accompanied students to Alaska, took trapeze lessons, and went rafting over a waterfall.
I was thinking this morning that I would be hard-pressed to consider my life mundane or devoid of the opportunity for new and exciting experiences. Yet I think that is what some folks think of when they consider married life with children. They might think that you have to give up the opportunity to live life to “the fullest” because you have “settled down.”
Quite the contrary, I find that Joshua and I help each other find adventure. Because he knows my hopes and dreams he helps me to realize them, and vice versa. In fact, that is how we ended up skydiving. It had been a goal of mine, so for our wedding, his gift to me was a skydiving gift certificate.
In addition, he opens up whole new arenas for me to explore upon which I might have otherwise missed out. Case in point: I presently am typing this on an iPhone on a flight to World Youth Day in Madrid. Why? Because at a Campus Ministry staff meeting nine months ago, Joshua suggested that I would make a great female presence for the trip. Having attended World Youth Day in Denver as an 18 year-old, he knew what a great opportunity it was for me. Technically, it is my last chance to attend as a “youth” (the age range is 16-35). I had just assumed I would never make it to a World Youth Day. But thanks to my relationship with Joshua, new and unexpected experiences are just around the corner.
[How did Stacey fare in Madrid? Stay tuned for more posts.]
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