Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Caribbean sunshine is good for the soul!

Addi in Aruba
I have had a hard time sitting down to write this blog because there is so much to say...I don't want to leave anything out, but I also want to keep it short...we'll see how well I do!

I was having a really good day the Friday we left. I wanted to blog about it, but was too busy getting everything ready so we could leave. The days before were really tough and emotionally draining, but Friday was a really good day.

I am always nervous to fly and felt like it could be my last day on earth...go ahead laugh at me, but I know better than most how just because the odds are against you doesn't mean you are safe.

When we finally landed in San Juan, Puerto Rico I felt like I could relax. I was so glad to be there safe with Brian and meet up with my parents and siblings. The sun felt amazing and we couldn't get to the beach fast enough...I headed straight for the ocean. The water has always been a happy place for me, but I felt so amazing in that moment. It was the best I have felt since my world fell apart.

The next day we boarded the ship and were feeling the Caribbean spirit! We had 3 balcony rooms side by side by side. It was perfect because it allowed us the right amount of time together as a family and the right amount of alone time as a couple.

There were still sad days on the trip, but they had a different feel to them. It was like Addi was with us every second, but the sad yucky parts were up on a shelf and we were shielded from that overwhelming sadness that can take over. Another great bonus was that babies under 6 months aren't allowed to cruise so we didn't have to see any babies Addi's age and there were only 2 pregnant woman. It was still hard to see little girls with their moms and dads, but that is our reality no matter where we are.

Our first stop was St. Thomas. A fan favorite of my group. Brian and I each got something nice. We each picked out something that we will get for when baby no. 2 comes around. His new watch and my new earrings are safely stored away until that day arrives. This is us being optimistic. Plus shiny things make us happy :) We rarely indulge in jewelry so this was quite a treat.

We spent the days exploring the ports, the rest were Grenada and Dominica (I didn't care much for them, but the lamest Island in the Caribbean is still a great place to be)then Bonaire and Aruba. Brian had great fun snorkeling in Bonaire and I love love love Aruba! The nights were spent as a family. We ate dinner together every night and usually found some entertainment on the ship. We took advantage of the pools and hot tubs and when the days were really over we would all meet up in one room to play Taboo.

Let me explain Taboo. It's a game where you are given a card with a word on it that you have to get your teammate to guess. You can't say any part of the word or the list of words underneath it. Alex had asked me to buy it for the trip and since it was his trip I was happy to do it. I had stopped by Target to pick it up before we left. I had just enough left on a gift card to buy it...it was a gift card I had left over from taking back a few baby related things we no longer needed. I felt like it was Addison's contribution to the trip. It made playing it that much more fun because it was like she was with us too. Any time Addi was relevant the person would use her to describe the word we needed to guess...I love how my family incorporates her into everything big and small.

The whole trip I wanted to find a good beach to write Addison's name in the sand, but none of the beaches were quite right. On the last day in Aruba there was a perfect beach, but I hadn't factored in the sun's position. We weren't able to see the camera's screen so we were taking pictures blindly and hoping a few would turn out ok. We have 3 that I am happy with.

It was my mom’s mission to find a blue topaz pendant (Addi’s birthstone). Each port we would check every jewelry store for the perfect one. We weren’t able to find one that my mom loved and she wasn’t going to settle on one that was just ok. It was nice that every day we would be out looking for something Addison related. I love that my mom wants her very own “Addi necklace”. We are still on the lookout for the illusive blue topaz pendent!

All in all it was the best getaway. An amazing escape from reality with people we love. I came back feeling refreshed and smiling bigger than I have in such a long time. It's amazing what a tan and a vacation can do for your spirit. Caribbean sunshine really is good for the soul. I am so thankful to my parents for putting this whole trip together. There is nothing out there that can "fix" us, but this was certainly appreciated and enjoyed.

When it was time to get ready to come home I just kept thinking how not ready I was. I wish we could have stayed another week...another month or maybe even forever! It's never fun to come home after a great trip, but this was different...I had nothing to come home to that I was excited about...I really could have stayed forever!

When we got to the airport there was a couple waiting to board the same plane as Brian and I. They were saying that they had a great cruise, but couldn't wait to get home to their 2 and 4 year old boys (yay for boys) I wanted to tell them how lucky they were to have that to look forward to, but I didn't. It just reminded me how I really didn't have anything/one to look forward to when I got home...I didn't even miss my dogs!

I'm leaving out a ton, but this post has taken me a week to write and I am tired of having to come back to it...usually I write one in 20 minutes and it just comes out...this one is just not coming to me and I feel like it is stopping me from writing other things that are on my mind. So I'm done trying for this one! My heart is just not in it.


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