A few weeks back, I had the chance to spend a quick weekend back home in Kentucky. And when I say quick, I mean quick! I worked at my job in Iowa on that Friday morning, flew out of Minneapolis that evening, arrived in Kentucky at almost-midnight, and then on Sunday morning, did it all in reverse (minus the “going to work” part…. no work on Sundays, hah!) Needless to say, getting up bright and early for work on Monday morning was tough!
Everyone thought I was insane for spending a total of 19 hours traveling just to be home for 29 hours, but it was the best decision I have ever made and I would absolutely do it again, given the chance.
First off, the question I’m sure many people are asking: how did you afford to fly home? Well, thanks to my Southwest Airlines Rapid Rewards points I’ve earned due to my “travel hacking”, I had enough points to cover the cost of a round-trip flight; I simply had to pay $11 and some-odd cents in cash for taxes. My sweet sister, Brittany, picked me up at the airport (sneaky thing got a gate pass and met me at the gate with some delicious Popeye’s!) so I didn’t have to rent a car, either. Plus, it gave us 4 hours of time to catch up on life! Literally, my only expenses that weekend were the (many) fast-food meals I ate and parking my car at the Minneapolis airport. What a blessing.
The other question everyone is asking: why? Well, when I originally planned this weekend home, it was for my Mamaw’s 75th birthday. I wanted to surprise her for her birthday– and surprise her I did! She burst into tears when she saw me!
Those 29 hours at home were the most un-adventurous, “boring”, yet amazing and wonderful hours ever. I stayed up entirely too late chatting with my sisters and brother-in-law, Aaron. I ate entirely too many fast-food meals from my favorite restaurants that we don’t have up north. My sisters and I fell asleep on Brandi’s king-sized bed while watching the Rugrats Movie. My extended family celebrated Mamaw’s birthday (minus my own husband, who wasn’t able to come to Kentucky with me.) I know that in this military life, the time will come when I will spend extended periods of time away from my family. As hard as it is missing out on things, it makes me cherish the times we do have together more than I would have otherwise.
I am so, so thankful that I was able to travel home to see family. Life is too short to miss opportunities with the ones you love.