Alright, so I have been avoiding this post for a while, partly because I’ve been busy, but more so because I wasn’t ready to accept that part of our life is over (at least for now). But now that we have been home for almost 4 months and the number one question we receive is “are you happy to be back?”, I figured it was time to let you all know how the transition back truly feels.

Flying back to New York from Hanoi, I had this giddy excitement knowing I would step off the plane and be on U.S. soil. I would finally be back in the land where I didn’t fear for my life every time we crossed the street, where I don’t have to think twice about ingesting tap water every time I brush my teeth, and where I can see my family and friends. The first 10 minutes were great, the excitement kept building but then we got to baggage claim and it cost 5 dollars to use a trolley.

I know, I know, you’re probably thinking “5 dollars, really? That’s nothing.” but coming from a place where we could buy dinner for all four of us for less than 5 dollars, you better believe we suffered through carrying all of our crap, minus the bag that the airline lost. Then we got to the car rental. Since I booked the car, they needed my license, the one that for 6 months I never took out of my suitcase, that same suitcase the airline lost. Anyway, after an annoying amount of time trying to figure out how to get a car, at midnight, a nice manager who felt bad for us handed over some keys. Finally, we were going HOME!

The Honeymoon Phase

I describe the first couple weeks back as the honeymoon phase. We were so happy to be back with family and friends! We got to meet our brand new nephew, surprise my best friend by coming home early, we bought new cars and found a great place to live. Prior to coming back, I was super nervous about the transition but all seemed to be going well! Unfortunately, for me, the honeymoon phase ended pretty quickly.

Don’t get me wrong, I cherish the fact that I can get in the car and drive two miles to see my family and that I can order the cheapest drink at a restaurant and not be concerned that it is bootlegged and might kill me, but I do miss traveling full-time more than I could have ever imagined and I want to tell you all the reasons why. But first, I will tell you what I don’t miss.

The Bad

  • The hard beds. Not sure why they even have mattresses in SE Asia.
  • The lack of space. We naively thought that we could be a family that lives in a tiny house. That flew right off of the table after a couple of small hotel rooms.
  • The inability to relax. Unless we were in a confined space, that had been thoroughly baby/child-proofed, we could not take our eyes off the kids. There were no casual walks down a nicely paved sidewalk.
  • The travel days. I despise flying more than anything. Wait no, I despise flying with a five and one year old, who have psychotic breaks at any given moment, more than anything.
  • Dryers. No one likes to put on a pair of stiff underwear.
  • The insane amounts of trash. Imagine showing up to this island, that during your research looked stunning, only to find the entire length of the beach is covered in garbage. If you ever need inspiration to cut down on your plastic use, take a trip to Vietnam.

I’m sure this list could go on and on but at the moment I am feeling especially nostalgic so I would rather get to the list of things I miss.

The Good

  • The spontaneity. There is something so magical about letting go of the need to control and just let life happen. Imagine being able to wake up and decide you want to fly to another country today? We had that option, every single day.
  • The time we spent together. In hindsight, we would have done it differently, we would have set up a schedule where Andy and I had more time to ourselves, being together 24/7 is not the healthiest for any relationship. That being said, as hard as it sometimes was, I will cherish every moment, because we got to do them together.
  • The food. OH MY GOD, THE FOOD. We ate our way through every country and it was glorious. Hands down, Thailand food comes out on top.
  • The people. Not only were the locals amazing in all of (except one) the places we visited, we met some other incredible traveling families!
  • The thrill. We were able to witness, in my opinion, some of the most beautiful places in the world. There are few things more thrilling than that.
  • The unknown. I know a lot of people cringe at the thought of the unknown but I absolutely love going to a new place with no itinerary and no expectations. To be fair, I used to be the opposite, I planned everything to a T but traveling full-time has opened my eyes to how exciting the unknown can be.

Forget What I Said

You know what, remember that previous list you read about the things I don’t miss, you can just forget about that because I miss just about everything and I now have this new appreciation for even the worst parts of traveling. You see, I really do believe that traveling can ruin a person. While some people are perfectly content never leaving their own state and others are happy being able to travel when they build up the vacation time, some people get the the full blown travel bug. The kind of bug that leaves you feeling unfulfilled, it ends up being all you can think about, you yearn for the next adventure, you lay awake every night thinking about how you can possibly do it again, you avoid going on Pinterest because you know most of your suggested pins are going to be gorgeous pictures of Thailand, etc…

So to answer the question of “are you happy to be home”. Yes and no. I am so happy to be surrounded by the people I love the most but I also miss traveling every single day and I would do it again in a heartbeat! If only I could win the lottery and convince everyone I love to come with us! 🙂

Click HERE for the reasons why we decided to travel full-time with two kids!

About Author

We are your typical American family who decided life is too short to live in one place.

You might also enjoy:


  1. Thanks for sharing. We have been back six months with mixed feelings as well. I totally underestimated how long it takes to transition back to a more sedentary lifestyle. It has been a bumpy road but finally started to feel a bit more settled.

  2. Thanks for sharing this. Coming back has been a roller-coaster of emotions for us as well. This post inspired me to share our transition back to the real world if you fancy a read on our blog.
    Here’s to saving up money for the next adventure!

Leave A Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *