Back in July, I took my last work trip before maternity leave. Before the trip, I was so looking forward to being done. It’s hard work to travel while seven months pregnant! Once I landed and got off that final plane I felt an overwhelming sense of relief to be finally done with the trips. But as I drove away from the airport another emotion took over, as a question kept repeating in my head: Is this really the last business trip I’m going to take for five months?
In the past, I’ve always relished short breaks at home. Two weeks, even three weeks at home after back to back trips can feel like a vacation! But after a few weeks, I always seem to get antsy. Where am I going next? How are my travel supplies? Should I actually put away my suitcase, or leave it out? Will my travel skills get rusty?
For the past six years, I haven’t gone more than a month without a business trip. Along with wife, daughter, friend, knitter, yoga freak, dog lover, and movie-watcher, “Road Warrior” is part of my identity! Who will I be the next time I go somewhere? One thing is for sure. I will have a new, huge, part of my identity: that of a parent.
The emotion that swept over me as I drove away from the airport that night was a profound sense of sadness. Sadness, and a little grief, for the loss of the old Road Warriorette. It surprised me, because I didn’t expect to feel anything but relief. But I know that the new Road Warriorette—the wife, daughter, friend, knitter, yoga freak, dog lover, movie-watcher, road warrior, AND PARENT—will be just fine. And it will be fun exploring this new identity!
Readers, have you had any major life changes affect your feelings about travel?