This summer we are tackling the road trip. For the first time. I’m really excited about it. We no longer have a baby, so I think everyone will really enjoy it. I would be lying if I said that I wasn’t a little nervous. Trapped in my car with four kids for seventeen hours? Sounds like a nightmare. But all of my friends who have done it before said it’s no big deal. Pretty sure these same friends said the same thing about childbirth.
I’m thinking it’s going to be a lot like labor and delivery. It’s pretty painful while you’re going through it, but the outcome is so worth it. Once I’m on that beach with the sun shining warm on my face holding a glass of wine like it’s my newborn, I’ll have forgotten all about the car ride. Until it’s time to pack up and drive back home. I’m trying to be prepared. The kids all have their own Kindle Fires and I will make for damn sure not to forget the chargers. On the advice of a friend, I’m going on Pinterest to find different activities to keep the kids occupied in the car. We’ll do a scavenger hunt of all the fast food restaurants and gas stations we’ll pass. Another hunt, for all of the different animals we’re sure to see. Some crazy tic, tac, toe games. Alphabet and license plate eye spy. And thankfully one of the kids came home with an awesome CD that their teacher burned as a last day of school gift.
I’m picturing all of us singing and laughing and creating lifelong memories. Everyone will be so happy. Beau and I will hold hands and exchange knowing smiles because we’re great parents, giving our kids a great lives. For about the first twenty minutes. After that I’m not so sure. Seventeen hours is a long-ass time. I want to drive for some of it, so that rules out sneaking vodka into my water bottle. At least when giving birth I had an epidural. How will I numb the pain of all of this family togetherness?
My sister-in-law, Molleen, had the incredible foresight to get pregnant about six months ago. She will be flying with her youngest and meeting us there. My sister-in-law, Molleen, is a genius. Why oh why didn’t I think of that? I once got pregnant because I didn’t feel like buying tampons. This is a much better reason to have a child. Getting dropped off at the airport with only one child. Boarding a plane where flight attendants will be there to serve you refreshments. All this while everyone else is driving through hell. I am jeals to say the least.
I’m sure after all is said and done we will look back with fond memories of our first road trip. One thing I know for sure is my kids’ memories, and lungs, won’t be filled with the second hand smoke of their carefree, chain smoking, unbuckled, parents in the front seat. And no one will get third degree burns because we already bought the sun screen. Their memories will be a lot different from our memories. But memories nonetheless.