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This beautiful, awesome, amazing, privileged, lucky life that we are all leading can often feel seriously and unabashedly undervalued.
Not too long ago, we travelled to Tanzania to climb Mt. Kilimanjaro. I can without a doubt tell you that it changed something in us. It was more than simply conquering the summit; though hells to the yeah, we were proud of that accomplishment. It was tough, most definitely, one of the hardest things we’ve ever done. The mountain gave us the confidence to know that the impossible is only impossible, until you do it.
But there was so much more woven into that trek.
It began with the guides: the men who helped us climb the mountain. We spent a week with them, walking 8-9 hrs a day, talking and learning about their lives, the challenge to get ahead, the corruption in Africa, the amount of money they earned in a year (which was often under $1000), the intensity of their hustle (mostly to be able to pay for schooling or food for their children), their home and their pride in their families. Life seemed like such a struggle for them. Yet despite all of this, their spirit and their smiles were ever-present. No matter what the challenge they encountered, they would simply reply with Hakuna Matata, which truly and honestly means No Worries in Swahili.
We came home to our house, our 2 cars, our phones, our computers, our full closets, countless shoes and our various amusements. Our fridges were full of groceries, we had plenty of pretty things for our house and toys for our kids were abundant. And it all felt ridiculous.
I stood one day in Toys R Us and watched countless kids (including my own) whine or throw a tantrum because their parents were not getting the latest Shopkins or Wii game. It was like I was Katniss witnessing the opulence of the Capital in the Hunger Games for the first time, and it made me sick.
Something in that moment woke me up.
What have we been doing?
Our children (and the majority of children living in this first world nation) truly have no clue how lucky they are. I want them to feel the world. Yet telling them or showing them online the kind of conditions that other children experience in the world is not enough.. We don’t see the kind of compassion or empathy we would expect for their fellow people. They are numb. They have become too over-exposed in the digital space to be able to fully appreciate their lot in life.
And an idea started to twist and turn in my head.
We needed to make a change. And not something minor.
A massive, life-affecting kind of change to kick this #Firstworldproblem in the ass.
It has always been our dream to go on a big trip. To travel the world and find opportunities to immerse ourselves in other cultures. To give back where we can.
We use the phrase “Life is too short” as a catch-all, an answer to cover all the possibilities when we want to do better, be better. Yet do we really pay attention to what that phrase really means?
It was time to walk the talk. We decided it was time to go and witness first hand the way the world works, and the role we play on the planet. To follow our dreams.
How can we ask our kids to follow their dreams when we haven’t followed our own?
We realized the time for us is now. No waiting.
If not now, then when?
When (if ever) is the right time to take that leap of faith and go do something extraordinary? You could spend your whole life waiting for the perfect moment, or you could take a leap of faith and make now that perfect time.
And so our big announcement is that we are selling our house, taking a leave from work, and traveling the globe with our family for 6 months at the end of this year.
This isn’t about going on vacation. This is about teaching our kids to become global citizens. To understand, to connect and to appreciate cultures all over this big, beautiful world of ours.
We want to make the biggest impact on our children while we still can. We have no idea what to expect, but we are going to take the leap. The universe is begging for us to explore it. For us, this is about living in the moment, in the now. We are going to go for it, let fear go and trust.
Trust that there will be good days and bad. Trust that we are risking everything and nothing. That we as a family will grow deeper connections and that our kids will learn amazing things on the road. Trusting (and believing) that this will make all the difference in their lives and ours.
We are so excited about our adventure and look forward to sharing the highs and lows of our preparations and our journey on our blog. We hope you will come along with us for this next chapter in our lives.
To making the when..now.
We started letting the words of this trip tickle our tongue even in this post awhile back. We didn’t realize then that we were starting to write this story. Think about what you desire most. Write it down. It very well could lead to your next chapter.
IF WE CAN DO IT. YOU CAN DO IT.