Since Robin passed away, I stopped traveling for work because I lost my flexibility to take business trips. In the past, Robin would manage the day to day activities, take care of Isabelle, the dogs and there were no worries – totally the best of both worlds for me. But now, if I was really being honest, the truth of the matter is that I have skipped travel because I am uncomfortable leaving the familiar. I like being home and having a routine somehow brought me comfort. However as life goes on so must I and it was time to get back in the saddle again and make a concerted effort to keep my job. I mean it is hard to be an effective leader of a global team and avoiding travel:)
I was invited to attend a short conference in Florida and thought this was a good opportunity for me to get my sea legs and start flying again. Also, this decision was a no brainer considering the weather in Michigan had been consistently dreary and cold. I had the chance to stay at a beautiful resort in Florida and network with other Talent Acquisition professionals. Let’s just say the answer was easy – YES, YES, YES!
I drove to the airport and treated myself to valet parking partly because it was a nice indulgence and also because I was cutting it a little close to my departure. Once I was in the terminal, I instinctively headed towards the TSA pre-check line when I realized I did not have that status on the boarding pass – that is weird. Luckily the line was quick and I sailed through – things were really working out for me. Then I noticed my ticket showed that I was the last group to board. I had completely lost my sky mile privilege because I had not traveled. Boy, Delta dumped me quickly… and I thought we were in a mutually committed relationship. Who would have thought that just a little over half a year of no travel, my favorite airline would penalize me and just push me aside? I feel so used! After recovering from the betrayal, I boarded a full plane and shyly took my seat in the back. Now I am not trying to be a snob but once you have received all those perks and the attention that accompanies a platinum flyer, you get used to it. Realizing that I was no longer considered a business elite traveler, I had to recover by creating a positive inner dialogue and embrace that my sky miles don’t define me. I am deeper than that… I finally focused on the fact that I was actually flying out of Michigan and you know what I was proud of myself.
Once we landed, transportation was arranged and I arrived at the Don Cesar Hotel which is a historical pink beach resort. On a side note, it is supposedly haunted but I did not experience any of that and lets face it, I go to psychics so not really an issue on my end- ha. The one unfortunate dilemma was that it was raining so hard that you could not even see the beach. It was kind of a bummer since I had a few hours before the meeting and wanted to get some sun. Instead, I checked into a spacious suite, investigated the hotel and found myself at the bar. How did I get there – hmm? I ordered a glass of wine and met other people with thwarted plans. They all shared how the weather had been perfect until today – figures!!!
I decided that my only chance of experiencing a little Florida magic was to wake up early the next morning and enjoy some beach time. Luckily my plan worked perfect. I peeled out of the bed and was out by 6 a.m. I ran along the beach and was able to see beautiful homes and the sunrise while experiencing the white sand and endless water. It was so peaceful and calm. You could not even tell where the sky ended and the water started. It was an absolutely fabulous couple of hours and I was so appreciative that I could steal away and just be totally zen. My problems and worries disappeared, now I know why people love living on the beach.
All and all my first trip was a fast success, I had a good meeting and experienced about 2 hours of beautiful Florida weather. Most of all, I finally had the courage to break the routine and begin functioning again. I would say it was a commendable start and served as a launching pad to my next immediate challenge… Poland – woo hoo. I now am eight months in and slowly regaining my groove again and it feels good.
Oh by the way, special thanks to grandma who stepped in and stayed with Isabelle, Laura and Ella. It is nice to have the support even if it can’t be my husband and love…