Traveling With Your Parents In Your Twenties

Traveling With Your Parents In Your Twenties

Recently, my parents came to Spain to visit me. My parents had not been to Europe since their honeymoon so this took lots of convincing. I seriously could not believe it when I heard them tell me they were finally coming. I was ecstatic. After a five-hour delay and missing their connection flight, they finally set foot on European soil.

imageOn our last night together, we all went out to dinner. As dinner was wrapping up, I could feel my heart starting to get heavy. I couldn’t imagine that the next day I wouldn’t be able to see them again for a long time. And that feeling surprised me. My parents and I are no strangers to goodbyes, to us they are more like a “see ya later” that we make a point not to dwell on too much. I have had to say goodbye to my parents three times now in my time living abroad, but this third time was different.

As I laid awake that night, I wondered to myself why this time felt so different. A week or so passed and I started to make some connections.

I often say the best way to learn about someone is to travel with them. I had realized that this past trip with my parents was the most consecutive time I have spent alone with them since my sister was born. Which is when I was 2 years old. I realized that even though I have lived with them the past 20+ years, do I really know my parents?

imageI have spent the majority of my twenties living away from home. In this time, I graduated college and have lived abroad for almost 2 years. I have come to learn that your twenties (at least for me so far) is a very strange limbo of sorts. It is this whirlwind rollercoaster-of-emotions adventure where I am just kind of making it up as I go along. My twenties, for lack of a better word, have been my “selfish” years.

imageI have had to be selfish and tell my parents goodbye. Every year I don’t want to leave them, but I know if I stay at home I won’t grow in the way that I need to. In this “selfish” time, they have been selfless. They let me go on these life-changing adventures no matter how much it hurts to see me go. I have learned so much about myself in this short time, and in this time I have learned how to live without my parents. I am slowly making that transition from dependence to independence. From childhood to adulthood.

In my “adulthood”, it is honestly easy for me to forget about my parents. I have been so busy with my life here, that when the date to their trip came up, I could hardly believe it. I felt like I had just said goodbye to them and that was 6 months previously. I had to remind myself that on this trip with them, I was going to have to take a breather for a second. I was excited to relax, and definitely excited to be with them.

imageAs my week with them went on, I saw them in a new light. I got to see my dad’s eyes light up like a little kid, awestruck at monuments he had not seen before. I got to drink coffee with my mom and see her love for people watching. I got to cry laughing with my dad as we realized we forgot my mom on the side of the road. And, most importantly, I got to “know” them.



imageimageimageimageimageimageimageNow, I will make this disclaimer that I am so lucky that:

#1 I still have my parents on this Earth and that

#2 I have a very good relationship with them.

I realize that my situation, for the most part, is rare and that many others are not as lucky. But, even if you do not have a situation like mine, take the time to travel with your parents. Whether it be a week-long or day-long trip, take the time to travel and learn about the people that have made you who you are today. Our parents aren’t the superheroes we saw them as when we were little. They aren’t invincible. They are human, and their time with us is precious. During these “selfish” times, it is important that we stop and take time for the people that have loved us the longest. I know I definitely am going to.


18 thoughts on “Traveling With Your Parents In Your Twenties”

  • 1
    Mary Shrode on April 14, 2016 Reply

    You are just the best writer Bridget I really enjoy your blogs, the photo’s are unbelievable I asked your mom if you cut and paste them from Pinterest I just can’t believe they’re “real” people photos!! And you guys are all so super cute together on this trip!! Believe me I know what you mean I’ve traveled a few times now with your parents (tee/hee)… hope we can come visit some day.

    Aunt Mar from NY (cuz I know you have a few Aunt Mar’s)

    • 2
      Finding Bridget on April 17, 2016 Reply

      Thanks so much Aunt Mar! Not sure I got so lucky to have them as my parents, haha. But you guys have to! 🙂 love you xo

  • 3
    Susan rogge on April 15, 2016 Reply

    Absolutely beautiful story about your time with your parents. Time is very precious. I went to school with your dadbn I know his crazy fun loving personality and you can see it in your pictures. Great job young lady

    • 4
      Finding Bridget on April 17, 2016 Reply

      Thanks so much Susan! My dad is definitely one of the greatest 🙂

  • 5
    Ivy on April 15, 2016 Reply

    Love this! My parents live on a different continent so throughout my twenties I’ve only been able to see them once every year, twice if I’m lucky. Even though we’re always apart we somehow manage to maintain a close relationship, like you. Your post brought a smile to my face 🙂 I’ll be taking my mom to Japan with my husband in a few weeks- will be keeping this post in mind while I get to really KNOW her. Thanks for sharing!

    • 6
      Finding Bridget on April 17, 2016 Reply

      Thanks so much for this! I hope you guys have an amazing trip, sounds like it is going to be a very special one 🙂

  • 7
    Ann Riordan on April 15, 2016 Reply

    Bridget, you melt my heart! Much love always, momma.

    • 8
      Finding Bridget on April 17, 2016 Reply

      Love you momma <3

  • 9
    Carolyn on April 15, 2016 Reply

    Charming piece. Oops on leaving your mom behind on the road. Very heart warming.

    • 10
      Finding Bridget on April 17, 2016 Reply

      Thank you! And haha she forgave us eventually!

  • 11
    Adrienne Lee on April 16, 2016 Reply

    Great blog. And from a parent’s perspective, we love traveling with our twenty-something son. We’ve traveled as a family since he was toddler. Now that he’s an adult it’s even more fun. We went to China in November and had a wonderful time making family memories.

    • 12
      Finding Bridget on April 17, 2016 Reply

      Thanks so much! I loved the picture you shared with us. So great to make these kinds of memories with family!

  • 13
    Cat Gaa on April 17, 2016 Reply

    Definitely struck a chord with me. My parents have always been supportive of my decisions – and in particular, of my decision to live in Spain permanently. And I’ve always loved traveling with them, using my time here for them to spend their hard-earned money showing us the world.

    They made the trip, along with my younger sister, at Christmas. They stayed in my new house with my new husband, and I got to show them my favorite parts of Seville. And it was stressful. And the weather was iffy. And we had his family’s commitments with me translating to no end. I cried on multiple occasions, but now that they’ve been home for a few months, I think it’s because I knew how things were changing. I have to take into consideration another person before flying home. Kids will eventually come. My sister is about to marry, too. They’re getting older, and travel may be hard if not impossible.

    So glad they were convinced to come visit you – it’s magical to be able to get along with your parents and spend time enjoying them!

    • 14
      Finding Bridget on April 17, 2016 Reply

      Wow, what a story. I completely understand. It’s so hard to juggle life here and back “home” when the definition of home isn’t as clear anymore. So happy that your family got to see you as well! Especially since Seville is one of the best cities 🙂 thank you for this lovely comment

  • 15
    Veera Bianca on April 26, 2016 Reply

    What a beautiful blog post <3 Your words are really touching! I have spent a lot of time living abroad and though I now live in the same country as my family I still don't see them enough as I am on the road so often. I always wanted to have my mum and grandmother visit me in Australia and Hong Kong but unfortunately they are SO afraid of flying that they would never visit me anywhere that requires getting on a plane!

    Love connecting with you on Instagram!

    • 16
      Finding Bridget on April 26, 2016 Reply

      Thank you so much for this! I think it is so important to travel with them as we are living abroad. And that’s so unfortunate but maybe you can road trip?! Love your blog and instagram ☺️

  • 17
    Kylie N on May 1, 2016 Reply

    Great post! I love travelling with my parents and sister! Definitely agree with what you’ve said, make the most of every little moment!

    • 18
      Finding Bridget on May 1, 2016 Reply

      Thank you so much, I completely agree! They’re so important 🙂

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