The end of November marked one year of van ownership.
I so clearly remember the moment we stepped out of the insurance office, transformed into the trepidatious new owners of a 40-year-old vehicle upon which rested my expectations of unfiltered joy and adventure. The weight of that first step-the foundation upon which we were building our lofty travel goals-was a heavy burden. We were terrified, no matter the amount of times I told myself we were making an investment in memory making. It took taking a big risk to pursue our big dreams.
What I couldn’t have known in those early days was that the journey of getting to our big trip has proven to be as exciting as the thought of the destination itself. We have fallen in love with the van-life community and values, and have been welcomed into a tribe of nomads and road-warriors whose enthusiasm and zeal for the challenges of life on the road closely mirror our own.
What I couldn’t possibly have understood a year ago, and what I may never fully understand, is the sacrifice my hubby has made in the process of making our dreams a reality. One of the things that people ask us most often is how we plan on financing such a lifestyle. The initial investment needed to purchase a van that suited our needs and the funds required to take our life on the road are staggering. Lifestyle changes (I have become cheap, more on that later) aside, we chose an avenue of financial gain that has been no easy task. Away three weeks of the month, Rob has sacrificed the ultimate: time with his daughter when she is young, and time with his wife, because I am not getting any younger and I am always exceptional company. What he has given us is the opportunity to dream of a year together on the road, and a year of family time when our daughter is at an age we will always remember. For us, it will be a time to show her the pleasure of the simple things in life; time to teach us how to help her develop a broad and educated world view; time to help her become adaptable and confident; time to love the variety of the world and the people in it. Really though, kids grow up; I miss my husband. We just want to spend some serious quality time together doing awesome things and making awesome memories.