They say I won't remember any of this.
That may be true. But from where I sit, it has definitely been an experience. I've seen, done, lived a lot. And who knows? Maybe years down the road I'll somehow keep the memory of this time in the recesses of my mind. Maybe it will be stored deep in my bones, some knowledge and strength to be drawn in unknowable times to come.
I've seen things I never knew existed. Rugged countryside, the wide, free plains, blue skies stretched tight from one horizon to the other. I've seen places I've only heard about in family legend.
Places where almost all the guys wear purple.
I've been to little country churches, parks in brand new (to me) cities, neighborhood swimming pools, and more houses than I could count (if I could count). I've met people who had only seen me in photographs. Napped on the shoulders of people I didn't know. I learned to sleep in a room with six other people - in a new and different place most every night.
My mama played a lot of white noise for me, at least until the other kids were asleep.
I played in the sand by the Gulf of Mexico. My parents dipped me in the warm salt water there (so different from the Oregon coast!). I sat in an auditorium and listened to worship music. I examined other kids' toys and spent a lot of time grinning at my uncle. A lot of time.
I've explored hotel rooms, houses, grassy rest areas and faces as unique as the snowflakes flurrying on a mountaintop.
So yeah, I've seen and done a lot of new stuff.
But I have had a lot of familiarity too. I've been between my brother and sister every day we were on the road, looking into their faces, erupting in giggles when they were being silly. I've sat on my mama's or daddy's lap for meal after meal: smelling their scents, feeling the comfortable curve of their bodies, listening to their voices. I've had a lot of extra snuggles lately.
I've slept in the portable crib I know from home, snuggled with my blanket and played with my monkey rattle all the way down to Houston, Texas.
I have been with my family. On a big adventure. It has been exciting and challenging, enlightening and enriching.
So even though I may not end up remembering this journey...I wouldn't have it any other way.