July 13, 2012 Butterfly Diary Team

How My Traveling Life Has Changed Forever?for the Better

Scientists may argue about the “God particle” at cocktail parties, and propound theories of the “Big Bang” ad nauseum. For me, my God particle ?Erika Amala?born on June 30th, 2012?changed my life forever.

Let’s put it this way?I was never the one to have kids. At school, I could have easily have been voted “least likely to have kids” and even felt that having kids would get in the way of what I wanted to do. All selfish reasons, but coming from a society like India where the idea of women’s emancipation was about as veiled as the Oracle at Delphi’s sayings, I wanted badly to prove everyone that life without kids was a-okay.

In the delivery room, pretending to chug down Chambord

And as I had previously written in my post, “Travel and the Naysayers,”? many people had nothing but horror stories about pregnancy and having kids in general.

You’ll never be able to travel again?

You won’t get any sleep.

You’re not going to have any time to yourself.

Almost two weeks after Erika’s birth, I have to say that not only is she a model baby, but that we have indeed been getting 6-8 hours of sleep a day. A notion that’s pretty incredible! And more than anything else, it’s the sheer joy of watching her every movement, and anticipating her growth that has made me rise each day in excitement.

Erika, age four days. Since then, she’s weaned off the pacifier

To care for yourself is noble, but to care for someone else is truly divine. Her helplessness and innocence are more reasons for me to want to travel and show her the world, as cliched as that may sound. And even though my nights are constantly interrupted, I find it so joyous to hold my little girl in my arms, rock her to sleep and talk to her about travel, music, beauty?.all the subjects I’m passionate about (she’s an excellent listener!).

In other words: having Erika has been a way for me to discover myself. I’m a complete sucker for poetry and love the line by William Blake, “the child is the father of the man.” I never really understood those words until now!

She loves her dresses!

So, what’s in store for 2012?

Yes, baby, we’re going places! What’s in store for 2012?

At first, local trips because we’re going to approach Erika’s schedule gingerly. I’ve mentioned before that she is an absolute darling when it comes to the tears department: she’s economical with her cries and doesn’t waste them until something really is amiss. This makes me suspect that she’ll be pretty good on the flights.

  • Weekend trips to the Catskills, for starters;
  • 1-2 domestic trips for 2012 to see how she does on the flights: we’re thinking somewhere in Florida;
  • Road trips whenever possible;
  • One long trip in December to South Africa to see my sister’s kid and then to India (this may or may not be doable, but we’re playing it by ear!).

Of course, I’d be remiss to say that if it weren’t for all the help I’ve been getting recently (my mother, hubby, my dad, my mom in law), I would not really be getting those hours of sleep, but she really has been an angel.

If you have little ones of your own, and have a tip about travel, do drop me a line?I’d love to hear from you.