I am realizing that one of the gifts of Sabbath is the space to be flexible. When spending some time with my sister and her husband recently, it came up in conversation that both my husband and my sister’s husband had “always wanted” to go to Havana. Normally, a trip like this would take a good bit of planning ahead, but a quick look at airfare and calendars told us the price was right and that all four of our calendars had nothing that couldn’t be rescheduled for four days just a few short weeks after the conversation. As I write this, I am sitting on a small second floor porch in Vedado, Cuba, after a few days of supporting the local people, and just a few hours before we leave for the airport to head back home.
On a larger scale, we are rescheduling our biggest trip of the year! We planned to drive the skoolie out west this spring for 5-6 weeks. Our hope was to see everything from Mount Rushmore to the Redwood Forest to Santa Fe. (For someone who likes Rent, likes to sing, and likes to start new initiatives, Santa Fe has been on my wish list for years. “Let’s open up a restaurant in Santa Fe!”)
As a family, we’ve been experiencing transition fatigue. Going for a few weeks, staying home for a few weeks, going for a few weeks, staying home for a few weeks. So, we decided to condense our travel to one semester instead of spreading it throughout the year. As we began to complete the necessary planning and arrangements to head west before winter sets in, we quickly found out that winter is already arriving in Yellowstone National Park, one of our destinations. We also learned that winter will still have things shut down during our originally planned spring timeline. Basically, in a skoolie, there will be no safe and enjoyable way to get over the western mountains during November – April. So, we must throw away both original plans and figure out if we can do a western tour as the grand finale of our Sabbath year, in May and June.
I could never have done any of this during the past six years of my life. Work schedules and school schedules had us locked in. Sure, we could travel some during school breaks, but not weeks on end. And we certainly couldn’t have played with three different months and had the flexibility to make any one of the three work. This flexibility alone is a form of rest for me.