When Daddy is Away

Easy E & Big Daddy walking the hill

It is no secret that I love to be on the road. Most folks know that once I am home I am thinking of our next adventure and am always grateful we get to go. As a result of my (our) wanderlust, a good portion of our life together has been spent on the road. We travel as a family. We travel as a couple. Before the boys were born, Dave and I traveled together on business. I believe our first business trip was to Internet World Los Angeles 1997, then to Chicago, Minneapolis, New York and back to Los Angeles two years later — all for Internet Worlds. After the boys were born, Dave continued traveling with work. In our recent past Dave has not being doing as much business travel. During this time we filled in the spaces with big family adventures.

As of late, Dave is back in his travel-a-lot-for-business mode. His current out-of-town-all-the-time routine reminds us of what it was like when Kyle was a baby. Back then we were living in the Washington DC area (Northern Virginia). Dave traded time between Washington DC, random business trips and Raleigh, North Carolina, his company’s headquarters.  Kyle was and still is an easy traveler. He began traveling at three months old. Kyle’s first trip was to Boston, next to Washington DC, and then a flight back to Utah. Back then Kyle and I often traveled with Dave. By the time we flew to places like San Diego and Tampa, Kyle (and now Eli) were pros.  As a result, adjusting to new experiences came easy. When Dave had a speaking engagement at San Diego’s Hotel Del Coronado, Kyle and I joined him. The best memory  of that trip was putting a giant metal, old-fashioned crib into a closet. By the way the closet was actually the size of a small bedroom. See, we used the closet door to block Kyle’s view of our bed. The door was an awesome barrier. If Kyle could see us, he refused to sleep.   Another time we tagged along to Dave’s Tampa-based business trip.  Sorry Florida. I spent a lot of time with you as a child. I am not a natural fan of your state. Consequently, I would never chose Tampa as a destination. Because we had a free hotel and mostly free travel and we were together, we were open. Florida became awesome.  I didn’t even mind our weirdly out-of-date-golf-resort lodging. (We don’t even golf, by the way). And because we were already in Florida, we thought we should tack a few days onto the end.  We did and found our way to the overly-tourist-filled Gulf Coast. I loved standing with toddler Kyle in those emerald waters. Even with tales of shark attacks in its recent past, the Gulf Coast was bliss.  I knew Kyle was safe as I watched him giggle and splash with Dave by his side.


Airplanes are Kyle and Eli’s sweet spot (they still are).  As soon as the airplane took off, the engine noise lulled them quickly to sleep. I did not want these days to end. The boys were young and travel was easy bliss. Kids under two fly free, if you hold them, and at the time there were often extra seats. People were always willing to move and accommodate us so we could sit together. I loved when people would say,

“Your boys are so good!”  (they were). Um, and thank goodness. The boys were not always awesome so it was nice to have an “awesomely behaved boys” space we could consistently count on.

You get it. We love travel. In fact I would argue that everyone who knows us knows that we still travel as often as we can — locally and far, far away. Nothing is better than the day we drove to Antelope Island on the Great Salt Lake. As much busy as Dave’s workload is and as much as he travels, it is not as easy to tag along. This week Dave is in San Francisco. One day we were talking when I expressed the following sentiment:

“Hey, I think I need to go with you next time. I think we all do.”
Dave responded, “Yes. I think you do. Let’s make it work.”

I love that about Dave. He knows me well and supports my travel love.

Dave and Kyle, Rob’s Trail, Park City, Utah

This week I am off-kilter. Some weeks with a commuting husband are easier than others. Did I mention what I meant by Dave traveling all the time for business is that Dave is now commuting to San Francisco each week.  Having a commuting husband (while I stay put) is a huge adjustment.I have talked to many friends that say when their spouse travels it is harder to sleep. I agree.  Every single time Dave hits the road I take a few days to get used to the profound absence of my snuggly bed warmer.  Sure,  there is an upside [wink, wink]. With him gone, I do not have to deal with an eye-rolling spouse. There is no one here to pushback when I say et the kids have ice cream for dinner, (something Dave would most definitely not approve of). By the way, I actually did let the boys have ice cream for dinner.  Please tell Dave that they did have a very healthy and big snack after school: yogurt, whole grain bread, an apple, a banana and a cheese stick. Right now I would trade a thousand stubborn eye rolls to have him here.  I miss him. I miss our face to face conversations, especially the ones we have after the kids go to bed. At this very moment I am waiting for him to get home. I am dying to watch our shows. I am tempted to watch the latest episode of “Sons of Anarchy” without him. I won’t.

With Dave away, tonight’s walk was a lot scarier. So was last night’s walk too. Tonight I swear the backhoe parked on the side of the road was a person lying in wait. I was sure that the scary dude (backhoe) would jump out and get (do something horrific) to the boys and I. I think Eli thought the thought that backhoe was a person too. When someone’s outside light flickered and shined on the backhoe, we both jumped . I took a breath and heard Dave’s words in my head,

“Beth, it is just a backhoe.”

Kyle encouraged us along, which is a very cool thing about your kids getting older and bigger, by the way. My boys can protect me! That being said, I totally missed holding Big Daddy’s hand. An at the sight of that killer backhoe, I wanted Dave.  I missed having Dave’s arm to squeeze. I promise I would squeeze the blood right out of it.

Daddy, it is time to come home!

2 thoughts on “When Daddy is Away

  1. I’d be so interested to hear Dave’s other side of the coin narrative. From my own experience, those big comfy hotel beds are always so lonely and sterile without a familiar presence to share with. Love the thoughts.

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