Mother/son travel: How far would you go for your son?

A (Jewish) mother on a trip with her grown son– a concept outlandish and outrageous enough to make a movie about it.

The instant I saw the preview  of Guilt Trip, I was guilty— of doing exactly what Barbra Streisand does to Seth Rogen in the movie.  I immediately texted my own grown-up son— to say we had to see this movie together.

He lives in a different city; and I never did get to see Guilt Trip with him; but I got something way better.  A real trip with him.  Just us.

There was absolutely no guilt involved in convincing him to come on a last minute short trip to a resort in Mexico a few weeks ago during winter break.

I don’t care how old he is—for a mother, having time alone with your son is paradise.  Especially when you’re in paradise.

Depending on family finances and family dynamics, it can be challenging; but even a short trip alone with one of your children  (at any age) makes a memorable experience.

When I was around 7, my dad took me along on a one-day business trip; and it was so special I never forgot it.  So I’ve tried to do that for my own kids.

Shared experiences create unique bonds and special memories— away from other family members and friends,  you get to see some different and maybe even surprising sides of each other.

That’s what happened a few years ago when my son and I found ourselves in beautiful Queensland, New Zealand,  which bills itself the adventure capital of the world.

My concept of adventure typically runs towards trying a new ethnic restaurant.

My son, 16 at the time, had other ideas.

When he suggested skydiving, I said I ‘d think about it.

And I did.   For at least 3 seconds.

But Daniel really wanted the chance to challenge himself.

Oy.  For me the challenge was a little different.

Wasn’t it my  job as a mom to protect him?  Was I really ready to let him take such a leap—on his own?

The way I saw it– this situation presented only one very obvious choice.

Somehow it seemed more scary to wait and worry on the ground,  helpless; and more sensible to be with him—equally helpless

Besides,  I wanted our trip to be a shared experience.

So our mother/son adventure wasn’t about guilt-—-but about guts.

 Secretly I was hoping the weather wouldn’t cooperate; but suddenly there we were, all suited up. (Love the photo bomb.)

I think the national motto in New Zealand  is No Worries.  And honestly, I really didn’t have (m)any.

When you’ve had cancer, as I did,  jumping out of a plane, especially attached to a handsome (and hopefully experienced) stranger, offered far better odds of survival.

I was so engaged in the moment; and it all happened  fast —I didn’t have time to worry about Daniel, either.  I mostly felt proud of him for challenging himself.  And I have a feeling I rose a little higher in his estimation, too.

 What a view!  What an experience!  What a story for Daniel to tell my grandchildren someday when he has his own family.

So next time you wonder how far a Jewish mother will go for her son—the answer is:   15 thousand feet.


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  1. says

    Oy! That’s all I can say–OY! You are not my Jewish mother’s Jewish mother, and seeing as she did the requisite job on me, I will not be skydiving no matter who wants me to. What if the chute hadn’t opened? What if you got tangled in the wires? What if your underwear fell down and got tangled in the wires and the unopened chute. Too many what ifs for me!

    BTW, I miss you….

  2. says

    OMG Darryle, I knew you and I were on the same wavelength! I love this post, and can totally relate. I started writing a similar post — I made my son go see the movie with me because we went to Iceland together last summer and had some adventures which took me out of my comfort zone as well! I am so impressed that you went skydiving — that is above and beyond, and would NOT have happened with me. You are an inspiration! xo

  3. says

    Haha; that sounds like me—usually. Normally I’m as neurotic as the best of them; so I’m not sure what got into me–or what got out of me–to allow me to throw all my typical worries to the wind. I miss you too!!

  4. says

    Definitely you could say this was above and beyond; as I told Jane, not sure how I managed it. If I didn’t have proof, I wouldn’t believe I did it, either. We’re definitely on the same wavelength–and sounds like you and your son have had some great adventures too. Iceland sounds fabulous–gotta put that on my list; somehow it’s not one of those places you think of going. I never did get to see the movie with Daniel; but I did see it; and I thought it was much better than the reviews indicated. Or maybe I just have a soft spot for the subject matter. Thanks, Lois. Maybe someday we’ll get together with our sons, too!

  5. says

    Before I did it, I would have said No. Way. Ever. But honestly, I think cancer made me feel bulletproof somehow from other things I feared. I guess one good thing I got from cancer—less neuroses. Haha; thanks so much Sharon.

  6. Nicole says

    Love this. I cannot wait to take my son on a business trip – both, but I know one who would live it. An exciting day for him is hanging around my office, so going to an actual foreign office would probably kill him with excitement. Thanks for an uplifting post :)

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