The ability for me to travel was so bittersweet. There was only one way this could happen, that is if Martin was either doing well and on his way doing his thing or what actually happened. I would take sitting at home with him over traveling anywhere in the world.
I was offered a voyage aboard the beautiful Virgin Voyages, and I didn’t think about it and quickly jumped at the chance. I invited Martin’s sister, Pat to come along. She helped us tremendously and she needed a vacation as well. Since vaccinations were needed, the kids were unable to join us. So off we went to Miami for this painful first fun outing.
Leaving on a plane was painful. It was leaving the kids, and honestly, Martin too. Just because they are gone, doesn’t mean it frees up space in your head or heart. I used to like a window seat, there was lots I needed to see. Now? Give me valium and set me in an aisle so I don’t have to look out the window. That is just one of the many things that grief does to you. I don’t want to fly over and see where he is buried, not even sure that we would fly over the cemetery, I just can’t explain it.
While we were aboard there was a reminder of Martin. It was his favorite song. He played this song all the time, fast and slow, backward and forwards- REALLY HE COULD. We had just signed up for the snorkeling a shipwreck (that quite honestly looked like a huge tetanus shot situation) and a swim with the sharks experience. Pat was a little apprehensive but, I WAS NOT! This was right up my alley and Martin would have been there shaking his head and telling me how I was going to die and then asking who would take care of the kids. Sharks were his illogical fear that went beyond the normal scares that we experience in life. Payton and I swam with sharks for her 8th birthday and Martin was mortified that I would put her in such danger. They were nurse sharks Martin- not great whites. But to him, it didn’t matter.
So then we head up to the pool where they were fixing to have good music and entertainment. I walked out into the open and was hit smack in the face with a memory that took my breath away like nothing ever had before. Pat quickly noticed that I wasn’t right and then heard the song. She was certain that was Martin saying – you better not do that shark thing!
In the end…
It is so hard to go these places without Martin. He had been my travel companion for almost 25 years. It absolutely sucks and guts me to go these places that I can’t experience with Martin. But in the back of my mind, maybe, I wonder if Martin has already been here and now I am catching up?
Enjoy all the coasts of somewhere beautiful for me Honey Bunny!