Last-Minute Jitters & Workation Worries

Last-Minute Jitters & Workation Worries


We’re getting ready to leave for a 6-week London workation this week (!) and I always feel some hesitation as the departure date nears: What if something goes wrong? What if we don’t like the nanny? What if our apartment gets canceled on us? Why are we completely uprooting our daily routines and norms, which are really comfortable and predictable?

The answer, to me, is that this worry and nervousness is part of the value of a trip like this. We will be completely out of our element, and that shock to our system and lifestyle is exhilarating; it teaches me something every time we’ve done it.

In Spain, we experienced a much more laid-back lifestyle, with friends pitying me when they saw me working at 6:30am, “Oh, poor Maria that you have to work that much!” So when I came back to the U.S., I stopped scheduling anything before 9:00am. My morning routine became MUCH less stressful and all my work still got done (I’ll admit, that surprised me).

In New Zealand, where the playgrounds wouldn’t last 2 minutes under an OSHA inspection, we rarely heard anyone say, “Be careful!” But when I saw a 3-year-old climbing to the tippy-top of a playground, I started looking around for the parents: The kid was obviously going to fall and kill himself – I was positive of that! I breathed some relief when I saw the dad finally walk up to the child, grab him, and push him up even higher! What a juxtaposition: I was thinking “careful, careful” and that dad was thinking “higher, higher.” Maybe that was the reason I took it pretty calmly when my son broke his arm badly on the monkey bars 6 months later and almost had to be airlifted to another hospital.

As we finish packing, get the kids last-minute haircuts and eat up every random item in our fridge, I’m thinking about how it definitely takes a small village to make a workation work. From house sitters to mail sitters to British friends-of-friends who give us recommendations to the teachers who prepare lessons while our boys are away, it so appreciated.

See you on the other side of the pond!

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