Tomorrow I am leaving on a jet plane. A solo trip, I am heading to the Revillagigadoes Islands to hopefully dive with mantas, dolphins, sharks, and humpback whales! As most of my readers know, my husband had a double lung transplant 2 years ago (Lung Transplant Journey), and our travel together has been cut a bit short. Randy is not diving anymore, especially not in a remote area where there are no doctors, and it’s a 30 hour boat ride back to Mexico. I’ll be on a liveaboard dive boat for 11 days in a very remote location with no internet or wifi. Unplugged, as they say!
I am living my dream of diving all over the world, seeing huge pelagics and feeling the wonder of seeing the world in a different way, meeting new people, and reconnecting with people I have met before. It does, however, come with a price.
It is not easy to go. I love to plan trips, and I look forward to going on them and experiencing new adventures. Every trip is a thrill for me, but as I said, there is a down side. I have to leave Randy. Of course I worry about his health, although he has been quite well. I realize his doctors are 30 minutes away, and good friends and family are here to watch over him. I feel guilty for being able to go on these trips when he cannot. It is best for Randy to be within 2 or 3 hours of a major transplant center. We do travel together, but he just cannot make long journeys to remote locations. He wants me to go, he encourages me to go, but I get that swoopy feeling in my tummy as the trip draws near. I leave tomorrow evening, so my tummy is jittery.
There is, also, something else. When I go on challenging trips, like diving in the Revillagigadoes, I sometimes wonder if I am “biting off more than I can chew”. It takes a few days, then I realize, hell yes I can do this! I just hope I can get a few photos that can represent the wonder I see.
Travel is important to us both, and we have always enjoyed interesting and fabulous trips together. How many more years of adventurous travel and diving do I have left? I don’t know, so I have to do it now. I am capable, and can handle myself in many different situations. But always, on the eve of travel, there is a feeling of fear, and of guilt, as I prepare to go.
People tend to think I just charge off on adventures without giving it a thought, but they are wrong. I do give each trip considerable thought, and sometimes I even wonder if I can pull it off. The answer is yes, I can do it by myself, and it is empowering to know that, but there are moments of doubt, and even fear. I learned a long time ago not to allow fear to stop me from doing what I want to do. Getting outside of my comfort zone is good for me, and has positive impact on my emotional life and sense of worth. Once I arrive someplace, I become comfortable (at least as comfortable as possible as my surroundings are sometimes quite different from what I am used to), and I enjoy every moment. Sometimes it is the Ritz Carlton, other times it is a volunteer house where I share a room and facilities with several others. Both types of trips are equally valuable. Tiny cabins on liveaboards are challenging in a spatial sense, but one has the entire boat to wander around on. I love luxury, but I can do well in other situations as well. (Luxury is my favorite, though!) My daughter calls it “traveling Tam style”. I chose that as my hashtag: #TRAVELTAMSTYLE. The Somar V is a luxury experience, though the cabins are small. It will be an amazing journey, I know! Randy and I did the trip together in November of 2012. Now, I go alone.
I have seen so much in my life, both good and bad, in people and in places. I grow from every experience, and isn’t that what life is supposed to be about? Growing, venturing, and taking chances makes a life which is never dull.
I will return from my trip at the end of February, and cannot wait to share my experiences with you! Til then!
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