Andi and I decided to steal away for one more night and have an extended adventure. We chose to head to the beach. I am getting ready to travel to Germany in less than two weeks and wanted to have a little extra special Mom/Andi time while she's on winter break. Plus, no disrespect to my job, but I'm just not fully charged yet. With the head-cold I've been saddled with this week, I highly doubt any of this break has been the restful recharge of the batteries I was seeking. In any case, Andi and I found a smoking deal on a ridiculously plush resort in Destin, Florida and we drove down the three hours from Poppa & Ginga's. It was mostly backroad country roads, but it was wonderful. We loaded up on gas and Starbuck's and hit the open road. The music was loud, the sunroof open, it was between 66 and 70 degrees. Sometimes it would rain. Other times, the windows would just be slightly open because honestly, we were warm. It was rather windy once we hit Florida, but we made it safely, sanely and once we pulled into this posh palace - we were giddy.
We valeted our car, because we frankly have way too much junk to deal with it ourselves. Then, we're a Princess and a Queen... so we have to act like the royalty we are... (that's tongue-and-cheek snarky!) ... We were escorted to the registration desk by our bell capt. and what seemed like a lot of luggage for one night (mostly stuff we don't want to leave in the car!) I forget his name but he was sweet with Andi. But then the front desk lady got a hold of Andi's attention and before I knew it - our room was getting upgraded. They also gifted her a bag of smores supplies, and a couple toys. They couldn't have been more wonderful to Andi if they tried - it was really awesome!
So, after we got to our room and settled in a bit. Andi got to swim in our amazing tub. Then we got dressed and went downstairs for dinner. We had a wonderful view and enjoyed a fiesta, including roast cauliflower, steak, mac & cheese and frittes. After dinner, we ran upstairs and dressed to go outside, a balmy 64 degrees, but windy - and headed down to the fire pit with our smores making ingredients in tow. Andi was her usual friendly self and made friends with the other two pairs there. They all were really sweet, and honestly, I don't think they really recognized she was hearing impaired. Then a little girl came down with her Dad and little sister and was shocked that Andi was 8 years old and smaller than her. Andi got rather quiet. Abnormally quiet while the girl was around. After they left I asked her, 'did it bother you that she said you were small?' Andi admitted, 'yeah!' So I had to have the talk about differences, size differences, what matters, what doesn't. But I can't help admit that our little reverie of last retreat from our daily life wasn't jarred by the unknowing words of an adorable little girl that meant no harm.
It reminds me that I need to fill Andi's bag with various armor to help her deal/cope/accept/defend herself from the eyes or words of others. It's just another layer of this life to consider, to prepare for, to arm against.
Andi is tough. She's made out of spit, vinegar and steel... but, that doesn't mean she doesn't have feelings. So, as we approach a new year, a new start, and new you -- please remember to tread lightly with others as you have no idea what they are dealing with... Also, choose your words with thought and grace... they stick and sometimes, they hurt without you knowing. So, choose kindness.
And, if at all possible... choose the adventure... because you never know if you'll ever get the opportunity to do it again. I know these little jaunts, even just the one-day getaway have sealed a bond so tight between Andi and I - that only the teen year's will destroy!! (HAHHHAHAHA!) But I am glad we are able to do this every once in awhile because it means the world to me, and it means the world to her.
Girl's Adventure awaits and hopefully tomorrow, we'll actually step foot on the beach!