As a stay at home mom whose husband’s demanding career takes him away from home for extended periods of time, all aspects of parenting our daughter are my responsibility. It is often said that stay-at-home mothers embody different personas; we are the housekeepers, teachers, chefs, financial advisors, nurses, chauffeurs, playmates and the list goes on. In other words, stay-at-home mothers of young children have very little downtime. In addition to all the roles we play, the mental load weighs heavily on us. The continuous cycle of thinking, planning and organizing domestic life can take its toll.
As time goes on, we start to blend with the house, our dedication to our children becomes invisible and taken for granted. We become ordinary!
What if a solo vacation to spend one-on-one time with your child is the answer to shake things up and offers you the chance to burst the daily routine bubble. Now, don’t get me wrong, traveling with a young child who is still not independent requires rigorous planning but hear me out on this.
Summary of my First Mother-Daughter Trip
I completed my first mother-daughter trip with my 4 years old daughter in June and July 2019. After completing a transatlantic cruise as a family, my daughter and I flew to London, England to start our mother-daughter adventures while my husband flew back home to the United States.
From London, my daughter and I traveled to the island of Mauritius, renowned for its crystal clear waters, white-sand beaches and luxury resorts. Many couples flock to this exotic destination to spend their honeymoon or to tie the knot. As for myself, Mauritius will always be home as long as my parents reside there. In addition to spending time with my family, my daughter and I spent a week in a beachfront resort. We spent our time frolicking in the ocean, riding horses on the beach and taking numerous long walks around the resort hunting for fallen coconuts and exotic flowers.
On our way back to the United States, we stopped in London, England for one week. This time we experienced the hustle and bustle of a metropolitan city. We spent time on various playgrounds, fed ducks and squirrels, enjoyed long walks in well manicured parks, discovered the city from above with a ride on the London Eye, and enjoyed the marching band during the changing of the guards by Buckingham Palace.
To sum it up, we both had the time of our lives because we planned activities we both would enjoy without having to compromise and take into consideration what other family members would rather do.
Health Benefits of Mother-Daughter Trips
According to an article published in the Journal of Neuroscience, the bond between mothers and daughters is the strongest relationship that anyone can experience in their lives due to the matching brain anatomy that controls emotions. Nurturing that deep connection through travels has crucial health benefits according to Harvard Women’s Health Watch. A vacation taken once a year with your mother or daughter helps relieve stress, improves the immune system and cardiovascular health. In other words, mother-daughter trips could make you live longer. I did not expect much when I decided to go on an international adventure with my daughter. To my surprise, we both grew so much from spending time in unfamiliar places.
I found pieces of myself that I lost in the daily rut of domestic life. For the first time in many years, I wasn’t invisible anymore. I felt alive and my daughter saw my carefree side blossom.
Now, I am aware that my 4 years old daughter might not remember our first mother-daughter trip. However, my hope is that the physical and mental benefits extend beyond the actual time spent on the trip. If not, I guess it is time to go on another adventure…