But if it is that hard, why do it? BECAUSE IT’S WORTH IT.
So here I am, listing five reasons that make traveling with small children so worth it!
Builds or Shapes Character
I always get congratulated by people who sit near us on plane rides because of how compliant my boy is, and so they also can’t help but ask me if Philip is just really a calm baby. I never know how to answer that question because a part of me is wondering if his calm temperament is inherent or if traveling with him always, helped in shaping him to be more patient and enduring. I mean, a plane ride is a plane ride. And it won’t stop midflight for your whims if ever you decide that you don’t want to be on it anymore. Philip has to endure 36 hours of flight and it will kee flying for as long as it has to fly regardless of his feelings.
Then he also eats anything. (I mean everything, including snow.) He eats rice, to soup, to baba ganoush. Again, I think it isn’t completely because he is a compliant boy but also because he knows he will starve to death if he refuses the only food that is offered by a certain nation.
And because traveling always brings you to new environments and experiences, my sponge of a baby has endless things to learn! I think this helps and turns us, and not only the baby, into people with an inquisitive nature and a discoverer’s heart.
Then, because children are more easily bored than parents, it also challenges our creativity and pushes us out of the box to keep them not only quiet but also satisfied. Never thought there were so many ways to describe the world until I had Philip! Kids make great storytellers out of their parents!
Makes Memories (Breaks Monotony)
When you’re in the house all hours, all days, all weeks, all years, everything looks the same. But squeeze in a break in some snowy country or one with crystal clear beach waters, then you have memories that are really easier to remember.
Add the fact that we take more photos on travels, so you kinda give yourself “more memory space” by storing photos in your external hard drive. Pulling out photos from them will serve as a good nudge of memories you’ve stored in your brain but cannot recall without any help, don’t you think so?
Elsewhere I heard that the best way to know someone is by traveling with that person. I think I agree with that statement because I can see how the unpredictability and discomforts of challenges can bring the best and the worst out of any person which cannot be helped in the face of provocation.
A by-effect of this is that we become more understanding of one another. We find it easier to dispense more grace when we go through the same discomforts together. We even become more supportive, encouraging and helping as need arises. Subjected to a new environment with inevitable travel twists and surprises only makes us stick closer together, as well. After all, who wants to leave the only other Filipino you know in a foreign land?
And though Philip is just a toddler, I believe it also benefits a small child to be exposed as early as he can to the true meaning of teamwork. Philip is only two but he knows that staying still and patient is part of his job when we wait at check in counters. Sometimes we make him push a bag as we walk to our gate just so he has a sense of responsibility. I believe it’ll only increase as he gets older and I am excited to teach him much more!
Philip is only two but he knows some kids are differently colored from him. Some are whiter, some darker, yet kids all the same. He’s got foodie footing knowing the world isn’t only about having pandesal and Adobo. He also knows language is not limited to Filipino, nor English. He knows different seasons, apart from hot and rainy.
In short, traveling makes it so much easier to raise a child with a global mindset. And this, I think, is a worthy preparation for an ever increasing globalized world. Imagine how that simple exposure of landing in different nations can help him communicate himself better to a global audience?
Values the Tangible
And lastly, I find that it is easier to keep Philip off gadgets, videos, and all things virtual, when he’s got a a chance to experience the more vibrant and more exciting, physical world.
Who wants to watch videos about rocks and soil and bears and paragliding, when he can see them, as well as feel them, smell them, hold them, firsthand??? 🙂
These are the five benefits I shared at the Mommy Manual presscon last week. This is my show with Cheska Garcia-Kramer, which finds its new home on GMA News TV. We are also so glad to welcome Marilen Montenegro as our new host! Show begins on June 20, which you will regularly see every Monday at 8:30AM on Channel 11 on GMA News TV. For the first episode, I will have my Momventures segment feature my personal travel with hubby and Philip to where my dad lives: Anchorage, Alaska!