In Max’s first year of life, we travelled a lot. It was inexpensive to fly, and he was portable. Max didn’t mind planes – and he was so cute we seemed to get special treatment from airport security guards to flight attendants. We visited family in British Columbia twice, spent a week in Key West, Florida and even ventured out to Casper, Wyoming on one of those little pond jumper planes.
We haven’t travelled with Max much since then. We managed a few short road trips, but being away from home started to get more and more challenging as Max got older. It became clear to us that there was something different about Max, that he wasn’t like all the other kids. In December 2008 Max was diagnosed with Autism. Since then our focus has been on getting him the treatment he needs to help him learn and cope with his environment. Travelling as a family has not been an option.
I dream of a day when I can travel with Max again. I know it will happen. I want to take him to a cottage in the wilderness, Disney World, see the wind blow in his hair as we drive down the California coastline, and watch him dip his toes in the ocean. We work towards this goal in tiny increments. Every successful trip to the grocery store or afternoon at the park is a step towards Max’s first canoe ride, getting his picture taken with Mickey Mouse and his first bite of real San Francisco sourdough bread.
Until then, most of my travel will be on my own. Trips are short (4 nights away at most) and on a tight budget. I encourage my husband to get away as well – the breaks are important. And as much as I want to travel with Max, I really look forward to the day when I can get away with my husband for some R & R (at this point one of us always has to be home with Max so it isn’t an option). But that day too will come (hopefully sooner rather than later!). I look forward to sharing our journey with you as we work towards our travel adventures.