My husband is on a plane to Honduras and I can't help remembering a time not so long ago when he boarded a different flight en route to a two month stay in India.
We were dating and I was so dreading it and while it wasn't exactly my favorite thing ever, it turned out to be good. I mean he came back with an engagement ring so I can't be too upset, now can I? ;)
But what hit me the other day was how quickly things have changed in these last few years for him when it comes to travel. Back then, the year he went to India, he took his first flight just a few months before that trip. To France.
It was a big deal--first flight, first time out of the country and of course he was super excited to spend time at a monastery, which seems fitting for a guy who wore black T-shirts literally every day in college. He is totally on board with simple living to say the least. ha! (Until I started adding crazy things to his wardrobe such as color or pattern or sometimes...wait for it...BOTH AT THE SAME TIME! OH THE HORROR!)
(p.s. Adam if you are reading this yes, it is going somewhere and no, this is not all about your wardrobe. Love you!)
Anyway, there really was this shift that occured once he came back from France but especially once he returned from India. And not just the ring that landed on my finger shortly after (though we were just laughing last night at the madness of wedding planning as he found an old notebook with several wedding-related to-do lists).
It was the idea of possibility. It was like the world had suddenly opened itself up to him and instead of feeling this "I could never do that" or "I wouldn't know the first thing about trips like that" or "I've never even been on an AIRPLANE" and this weird idea of things being unattainable...just like that, a switch flipped.
And now, just a short time later, this man I married is not only extremely affected and shaped by his experiences that year in France and most absolutely in India, but he is also leading trips of youth across the globe and collecting stamp after stamp on his passport.
I don't believe that one has to travel internationally to experience this, though it has had quite an effect on both Adam and me personally through my own travels, and I do recognize that actually, these opportunities are not available to everyone--it costs a pretty penny for a plane ticket, after all. (Though as Adam has discovered, there are creative ways to raise the funds, it is still without question that we and he, specifically, has been extremely blessed with opportunities that we and he, specifically, does not take for granted.)
But it is fun to witness that change in him and to see that lens shift in his world. It's funny how one little shift and suddenly your whole perspective is changed with new colors spilling over everywhere you look. And the world can seem much brighter, both bigger and smaller at the same time, and you can find this confidence bubbling to the surface.
(Though also as we have both discovered, sometimes the world seems much darker...but that's for another day.)
It's especially nice to remember this on a send-off day, my least favorite of days, and know that I get to witness these changes in this man of mine for years to come and he in me. There's a comfort in that, a knowing that you are known as you are but that you will also be known as you become and whatever you become--that he will be there for the full arc and not just a blip here and there.
And I know that sounds really corny and totally unrealistic in this day and age, but you know what? I believe it.
p.s. But still please hurry home.
p.s.s. This doesn't mean I want to live in another country. I don't.