The Next Big Thing

Photography: Hannah Symister Photography

By Hannah Symister

I always find after any big event or action-packed holiday that there is a bit of a lull, a low, or feelings of, dare I say the word, depression. Returning from an international trip away and settling back into routine I am reminded of this. I haven’t experienced a lull yet. I think mainly because I was without my baby and my 4-year old for two weeks while on a work holiday, returning back to them after a time away feels just as rewarding as it was being abroad. But the routine of life with kids has certainly been quick to announce itself. The loud cries of bustling city life has been replaced with the solitude of home, and the daily interactions with the unfamiliar are quashed now with the norm.

Travelling has been a big part of my life since the first time I set off abroad. When children came along, vacations and travelling were not cast aside, though they became very different. But boarding a plane for an overseas adventure was not something we – OK, I – was willing to give up. We are not the kind of family which is never home because we are constantly travelling around the world though. Although I would love that kind of lifestyle, my young boys and my husband love their haven of home – having everything they treasure and find comfort in exactly where they want it.

Not long ago we stayed at a hotel for quite a long period of time in America. Squirrel was really into playdough so I had bought him quite a bit to keep him occupied in the hotel room, as it can be hard to entertain a toddler when you can’t rely on the normal toys of home. He had sorted them all and put them in a box he had found in the hotel room, I had originally thought was for magazines. When we returned from a thrilling day of sightseeing he was distraught to find all his playdough had disappeared. We discovered, later, that the box in question was actually in the room for your recycling, and the cleaner had emptied the contents rather quickly into the bin without realising what it was. More playdough had to be bought! Travelling can have its challenges, and my family certainly all love the feeling of coming home to one’s bed after being away for a period of time.

I don’t know many who are as stir crazy as me. Returning home can be incredibly satisfying. Soon after I arrive back from somewhere though I quickly become eager to depart again for the next destination.

Our Insta and social media lives are full of the fantastic and extravagant lives of others. Exuberant and smiley faces scream at us every time we look down to our phones. The problem with this is that it isn’t reality. We are getting a glimpse into someone else’s life, but what we are seeing is a snapshot of the best of their life. We are not viewing the highs…and the lows. What we are seeing is only the very best moment, of the day. We all know this, of course. But it can so easily be forgotten when our lives feel chaotic or monotonous, and while we sit down for a break from our daily mummy errands we tune in to the delicacies of what everyone else has. But like a plate piled high with sugary sweets it can leave us feeling a little sick if we gorge too much.

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