Andrew T Edwards

Finding the silver lining when your husband is sick on holiday

When I go on holiday, I like to get to the guts of a new place. If there’s something gritty to see, I’m in. I love to wander around, finding things I’ve never seen before and I savour the experience of newness. I suppose when I travel, I’m looking for the heart of a place, always. Travel is when I feel most alive.
Steve – on the other hand – loves to kick back, lay on a sunbed, read a book and swim. That’s his bliss and something I rarely enjoy doing for long, not when there is a world to be discovered and new people to meet! So we’re always looking for compromises on holidays, to ensure both get what we need.
And, of course, we must bring the boys into our planning today as well, and they need action, always action. We’ve learnt to keep ‘em busy to ensure they’re happy. Happy kids when travelling is a very good thing after all!
Four people to please, all so different, it is never easy getting the formula right.
But with Steve squirming around in bed for two days in gut ripping agony – we’ve all been there right? – I didn’t want to be too far away in case he needed me. So the choice was taken away, and I had to sit on the beach and learn to enjoy peace.
As I sit here, watching my boys throwing themselves into the waves on the Arabian Peninsula, I can tell you, they are in heaven! Beautiful azure water is a feature of the UAE, as is pristine white sand. If you want a beach break, this is a wonderful place to visit.
I’m not in the ocean with the boys though, because it’s winter here (high 20s Celsius during the day so hardly cold) but the water just isn’t warm enough at this time of year – for me anyway! No worries for the boys though, and just about everyone else on this beach. Practically no one else seems to mind the colder temperatures…. Yeah, alright, I’m a wimp!
By being forced to chill and just hang with the boys, I’m getting a glimpse into the magic of holidays for a diverse selection of people from across this gorgeous world.
A fantastically pregnant woman in a bikini squats to take a selfie with her family frolicking in the waves behind her. I never braved a bikini when I was pregnant. I admire her.
Then there are the families holidaying with toddlers who are building their first sandcastles together. That’s a special memory.
We have fitness enthusiasts running along the beach.
Couples enjoying romantic walks and cuddles.
Teenagers enjoying their families, but getting to that stage of demanding more independence too. I most enjoy watching them sneak a pervat other teenagers when they feel brave enough. Remember those days?
Bodies – all shapes and sizes. On display. Free.
And a collective shout of excitement as a wild pod of dolphins swims in the ocean near us. How bloody amazing are dolphins? Gorgeous.
My on-going challenge, since I became a parent, is finding the peace and quiet to get a clear head and ponder what’s next with life. That’s something I miss – quiet head time.
So a sick husband has given me a little gift. He’s given me the opportunity to be still. To not do anything. To not think about anything. To just watch. Just appreciate. I had no choice but to do it with Steve out of action for two days and it’s been awesome. He’s hated it – serious guilt – but he’s missed out on some perfect holiday time for him too. Bless.  
I’ve never been very good at this relaxing stuff, but maybe I should try a little harder. It’s not bad, not bad at all.
Anyone else not good at switching off? Or am I the solo nutter here?
Yours, without the bollocks
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