We still learn lessons at an old age

Lanzarote Dec 2017

To say we’re excited about this trip is an understatement. Caleb was woken by Jon showering last night at 10pm thinking it was time to leave for the airplane but then couldn’t go back to sleep because he was so excited and thought it was nearly time to wake up.  Because we had such a bad night with a child who couldn’t sleep, I found the 4:30am wake up even harder than usual.
Everything went pretty smoothly, in the car by 5am. At the airport by 5:45. Meet and greet to drop the car off then check in – none of us were seated together. Not a problem, they’d fix it on the airplane. Breakfast from Pret – Jon couldn’t find anything healthy to eat. He’s been really good and has lost loads of weight especially for this trip! The kids had a little play at the soft play and then we boarded the plane.
Waiting at the back of the plane until everyone was seated so they could move people around to have us each sit with a child was a little agonising but it was fine until they sat Lil’s and I at a window next to what looked like the grumpiest old man I’ve seen. His face when he let us in spoke a thousand words of how annoyed he was that a child was next to him – well so I thought!  This year I’ve learnt a lot about the story we tell ourselves in different situations which are mostly untrue but made up by ourselves and this was one of those cases. I’m a little ashamed at myself to be honest, for judging him so harshly and it was a good lesson learnt.
As we were waiting for the plane to lift off and run along the runway I watched him from the corner of my eye typing an email on his iPad. I sneakily read it whilst reading my book. It read ‘ I must apologise that I have not spoken to you, I have Parkinson’s disease unlike most people, they get the shakes but with me I have no voice so I cannot speak at all as it has affected my voice.’
I wondered who he would be typing it to and wondered why he would be apologising. He mulled over it for ages and deleted and retyped things a few times before tapping me on the shoulder and getting me to read it. Yip, he had typed it to me. I felt awful. This poor man felt he needed to apologise and his look wasn’t one of irritation but rather one of shame and not knowing how he was going to cope with the situation. Shame on me for judging him and writing my own misguided story in my head! As he deleted the message after I had read it I wanted to lean over give him a hug and tell him he never needs to apologise for who he is but I was a little embarrassed by my one thoughts that I wasn’t sure how react. I wish I had told him how strong and brave he was and the fact that he has no voice makes him stronger than I’ll ever be. I mean, imagine living without the ability to speak. So, before 8am this morning, I had learnt a valuable lesson and even though I didn’t tell him that he was in fact amazing and didn’t need to apologise I hope that he knows it and realises it.
Lils slept most of the flight. I managed a quick power nap which would get me through the day too. Jon and Caleb sat on the other side of the plane but no sleeping was happening there.
Our hotel is amazing! The type of hotel I’ve always dreamt of staying in. The rooms are not 5 star rooms but they’re comfortable enough to spend a week in and to be satisfied to give up your home for.
The swimming pools are a little too cold to swim in but the sun is out so I can tan and there’s an indoor pool to keep the kids satisfied along with a kids club that has activities for the children to do. We have to stay with Lil’s unfortunately but at least we have it if we need it.
Incredible is the best way to describe the food. It’s half board, breakfast and dinner buffets. I’ve never seen spreads of this calibre before. Everything you could possibly think of or want. The children think it’s amazing that they can have ice cream every night after their meal. Lil’s will eat anything if she knows she’s getting a treat afterwards. Lil’s basically ate a bowl of coloured sprinkles for breakfast – It was Saturday so she was allowed to.
The high street with markets and the beach is literally 2 minutes away and although it’s not boiling hot, the temperature is perfect! Perfect for tanning and chilling in the sun.
I think it’s going to be a great week, super chilled out and fun at the same time. It’s so good to have Jon available to be a dad with us without him having to work. It definitely changes the travelling dynamic. Currently, he’s busy playing with them in the room whilst I tan and get some me time and then we’re all going swimming. Seriously? Is this actually happening? We are so blessed!
As we sit on the flight about to arrive home, I can reflect and say what a great week we’ve had.
The week started off with Lil’s having croup, thankfully I packed in our steroids at the last minute before leaving the house because the hospital in Lanzarote wouldn’t do anything about it until it was full blown and she was struggling to breathe. Having gone through this before, I know the sound of it and how it started last time. 2 doses of steroids though and we were through it. The week ended off with Caleb and Jon having a tummy bug. Thankfully, we still got to do everything we wanted to do and none of this stopped us.
Everyday started off with a massive breakfast that would get us through to dinner, followed by a swim in the warm pool – this was my tanning time whilst Jon swam with them. I’m very grateful for the warm pool, had we not had it, the kids wouldn’t have swam as the outdoor water was too cold.
After changing and getting warm again in our hotel room, we headed out to the beach or on one of the days went up north to the views, went to the markets and visited the other little villages.
Our beach time was spent in the water and building sand castles whilst Jon flew the drone.
We stayed out most afternoons or the children would go to the kids club to do some sort of activity there. The kids club wasn’t very good and I’m guessing it’s because there weren’t very many children yet, it’s also not somewhere I would have left my children to play without us being there.  After bath time, we would head down to a big dinner again that was followed, every night for Lil’s, by strawberry ice cream and sprinkles. Once Caleb got the bug, he didn’t eat much at all so he definitely didn’t fancy ice cream any more. The bug was only 24 hours but I would say it took him 3 days to be back to normal again.
Our holiday was fantastic. It was definitely what we needed and great to just get away as a family with no work commitments and no where to go to. Staying in one place for 7 days was refreshing and travelling with a Dad and not a ‘working’ dad made my life so much easier. I highly recommend Lanzarote as a family destination, especially if you are spending the whole winter in the UK, it’s great to break up the cold miserable weather.

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