A few years ago, she took a Caribbean cruise with her husband and two boys. This was a trip funded on an unexpected windfall. They had a great time, came back with wonderful pictures. Talked about how they couldn’t wait to go on another cruise together.
Four months later, her husband died in a tragic accident. He was young, fit, healthy, someone you would expect to be around for a long time. Their two boys were still in school. Of course, the family was devastated.
A few months later, I saw her after she returned to work. Pictures of their cruise were on display in her office. I had wondered since the accident if she regretted spending the money now that finances were going to be even tighter for her as a single mom.
Of course, we all try to spend as much quality time with our kids as we can, and in our busy schedules, it often means fitting in a game of mini-golf or spending an afternoon at the beach. But there’s something special about going away together. It allows families to really focus on one another, without day to day distractions getting in the way. (I know I am not the only mom who can’t help thinking “When I get home I need to ...” or “What I am going to make for dinner tonight?” during my “quality time.”)
I certainly don’t advocate anyone spending beyond their means for a family vacation. It can be as simple as a weekend camping trip. The point is to have a change of scenery, and to have nothing on your schedule but enjoying each other’s company. Your kids will love you for it.
Now go away.