Mom Wants A Diabetes Cure

Tuesday, May 23, 2006


For months now, I've been crawling out of my skin. I've been taking stock of my life...looking back to see how I came to be where I am today, and although I'm doing exactly what I've always planned to do (staying at home with my kids), I do have regrets.

One of them is not traveling. I want to do the by myself, on my own, without a clue as to what the hell I'm doing kind of traveling. Not the tour traveling with people who want to see museums, eat at caf├ęs, or shop in street markets.

I'm talking about the kind of traveling where you close your eyes, point your finger, and pick a spot on a map and then go there and see how people really live...meeting them (hoping you don't get raped or murdered when they invite you into their homes for a meal and conversation) and seeing if their lives are just as confusing, and regretful, and complicated as my own. I want to experience the human condition of others.

Recently, I was invited by a good friend of mine to visit her in France where she lives with her French husband, and where they've created a family of two beautiful children who speak French. My friend is from America and she's described how, when they all speak together, it's a whirlwind of French and English. I want to experience that crazy, confusing kind of conversation.

I want to live outside of my comfort feel tense, nervous, unsafe...I want to feel some emotion for once.

I'm taking her up on her offer!

I mentioned it to Jeff. I asked if he wanted to come along...we could bring the kids. He sniffed, wrinkled his nose, shrugged his shoulders, and reminded me that he doesn't like to travel, he doesn't speak the language, he's not interested. I told him that I'd like to go by myself then. He shrugged those shoulders again and said, "I don't know". I don't know what "I don't know" means, but I'm not taking it as a no.

I've planned my life carefully to avoid struggle, pain, and regrets. I went to college, graduated in 4 years, became engaged to the man with whom I carefully nourished a relationship to make sure that he was the one forever, we got married after carefully planning our wedding, we bought a house after saving every penny we earned, we fixed up the house before we had kids, we had kids. Now I regret not really living life.

A life too carefully planned is really no life at all.

Is it foolish of me to think that I can just pick up for a week or two, visit someone halfway across the world and live the life I want to live for such a short time? Is it foolish of me to live a life of someone who doesn't have the responsibilities that come with being a wife and mother of three young...very young...children?

Maybe so, but I'm going to France. August of 2007.


  • Congratulations! And enjoy your trip. And no, I don't think it's foolishness to want to do something exciting and not planned out. Everyone deserves a little "me-time" now and again, and this sounds like the perfect opportunity. I'm sure you'll have a great time.

    By Blogger Val, at 5/23/2006 10:58 AM  

  • You know, I'm proud of you for doing this. You offered it to the rest of your family - and they turned it down. You're not foolish at all to want to do this. I think everyone needs a break.

    This sounds like a fabulous opportunity for you and I'm sure you'll enjoy it so much. Maybe next time the rest of the family will join you?? I also think it'll be a good time for you to look back on your life, while you are away .... I"m sure when you get home, you'll have a new appreciation for what you DO have and what you have worked so hard for.

    I'm excited for you! Oh, and I know what it's like to live in that crazy English/French household LOL - it's nuts! I lived with a friends family when I attended college - they are French (French Canadian). They spoke French a LOT at home and by the end of the year, I KNEW what they were talking about - it was a mixture of French/English - hilarious - and so cool I could figure it out unconsciously ...

    By Blogger Jamie, at 5/23/2006 11:27 AM  

  • Nothing foolish about it.

    You need this break. And what a wonderful opportunity! I am so happy to read that you're taking advantage of it.

    Shannon, it's gonna be an adventure...

    And yes, I am more than a bit jealous :-)

    By Blogger Sandra Miller, at 5/23/2006 12:36 PM  

  • Shannon what a dream come true! I am guessing its Corey you are visiting... She is the best! I really appreciate your comment on my blog. I am so sorry to hear about your mothers stroke, is she much better? We are only in the very beginning of this new journey, so everything looks so overwhelming right now... I too have thought of just up and leaving for a week or two - truth be told I'd love to just move to France! You give me hope and confidence to keep dreaming my dreams... Best to you, and I don't think its foolish at all! You need to live life to the fullest, as we never know what the next day will bring...!

    By Anonymous Ulla, at 5/23/2006 1:00 PM  

  • This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

    By Blogger Shannon, at 5/23/2006 1:11 PM  

  • Thanks Val, I really do need to do something not so planned out even though the trip will be a year away from now, LOL. Just making the decision makes it feel spontaneous :)

    Jamie, what you said about being proud of me means a lot :)

    Sandra, thanks for the encouragement. I do need a break :)

    Ulla, yes, you guessed right about Corey :) Also, I think you have me mixed up with the other Shannon that comments on her blog. My mom didn't have a stroke...thankgoodness. I hope you find your way to France one way or the other.

    By Blogger Shannon, at 5/23/2006 1:27 PM  

  • Shannon, you're going to have a terrific time and the trip sounds perfect for you. I'm only sorry you're not leaving a year earlier!

    By Blogger Lyrehca, at 5/23/2006 3:44 PM  

  • Shannon, your plan sounds just right. You deserve to take that trip and have a life experience that feels like Life, instead of a version you've only dreamed of.

    Good luck on your trip. What a perfect idea.

    By Blogger Kerri., at 5/23/2006 7:57 PM  

  • Ireland, '08... come hell or high water, That's how I'm celebrating the big four-oh

    By Blogger Kassie, at 5/23/2006 8:06 PM  

  • Not foolish, Shannon. Plus, until it happens, just thinking about it will give you pleasure and escape.

    I'm happy for you...LIVE your life!! :))

    By Blogger Johnboy, at 5/23/2006 10:19 PM  

  • Oh Shannon I am waiting!
    Everything will fall into place, we will have such a good time!
    Jeff, thank you, three little children (one with a Boston accent, thank you and life in perfect planned order, thank you!
    Thank you for saying yes Shannon!

    By Blogger Tongue in Cheek Antiques, at 5/24/2006 2:32 AM  

  • It sounds like a great trip. I'm a bit jealous, too. If your husband doesn't want to go, it's his loss.

    My mother travels without her other half all the time. He's not big into travel either, but she wants to go places, so she goes with a friend. Frankly, I'd rather go alone that go with someone who doesn't like to travel.

    By Blogger julia, at 5/24/2006 10:20 AM  

  • Shannon, I think this is great.

    I'm so proud of you for taking this opportunity to nurture you. And I think you'll be a better mom, wife, etc. for having done this for yourself.

    I can't wait to see pictures (yes, I know it's a ways away)!

    By Blogger art-sweet, at 5/25/2006 9:04 PM  

  • ::chanting:: Do it. Do it. Do it.

    France is AWESOME. And I'm not just saying that. It really is. If you want any tips on sights to see, just drop me a line.

    So. Freaking. Jealous. Sigh.

    By Blogger Allison, at 5/26/2006 11:35 PM  

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