Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Valentine's Day Guest Post: Travelling With Pinay Travel Junkie And Our Baby

A surprise guest post by Pinay Travel Junkie's backpacking buddy-slash-life partner. A post he wrote while I was slumbering and while he was doing an all-nighter watch on our sick daughter. Something he was able to do for my Blogger's constantly logged on... I obviously just added this part after he published the article.

Isla Cantuta floating Island, Lake Titicaca (at 3,800 meters above sea level), Peru. One of the few family photos (with all three of us) we got for this round-the-world trip.

Firstly to my wife Gay, I'd like to say Happy Valentines Day! We're in the middle of our big round-the-world trip with our 16 months old baby, which kinda started in Australia for 5 months (where I grew up) then went to USA for 1 month (San Francisco), Mexico for 1 month (Mexico City, Puebla, Oaxaca, Merida, Palenque & Cancun), Peru for 1 month (Lima, Paracas, Nasca, Arequipa, Puno, Cusco), and now Brazil (currently in Cabo Frio). It's definitely been a hectic journey, travelling long-term as both a couple and with a baby! It goes without saying that it's been difficult in many occasions and amazing in many more occasions!

Back in 2009 we already backpacked South-East Asia on a shoestring as a couple, which pushed us to our limits (mainly due to bed bugs from Borneo!), but we endured it together and came out with great experiences, and it was during that trip that I realized that if we can handle an intense 6-week backpacking trip together then we can handle almost anything! So that was when I decided I truly wanted to marry Gay and spend the rest of my life with her, and several months later I did propose to her and for some reason she said yes!

Unfortunately, we were really exhausted from that trip, and 3 years later we still haven't had much chance to relax since then! First we had a very rushed wedding within 3 months because the peak wedding season was about to start, and between the wedding and our honeymoon we used up pretty much all our money. Then within weeks after getting hitched we found out she was pregnant, and we went through 9 months of her pregnancy amidst family stresses while I also got an RSI injury from overworking, all of which resulted in us becoming really exhausted, and barely getting a few hours sleep each night.

Then our baby Luna was born, and we literally survived on roughly 1-hour sleep each night for several months, that REALLY pushed us to our limits! Plus we went through months of constant stress to arrange Gay's visa to Australia, and because of visa delays we ended up getting to Australia at the start of winter, which was about 20 degrees colder than what we were used to! Add to that some more family stresses, and the 2 years of continuous events had really gotten to us. It was the obvious time for us to finally settle down and buy a house and live the same routine every week. But instead of settling down, we seemed to think we still had some crazy left in us so we decided to take our baby on a 9 month round-the-world trip before settling down! Some would say we're crazy. others would say we're extremely crazy, but at least we think it's cool!

Travelling with a baby really is hard work, and the lack of good sleep makes it that much tougher, and obviously there are a lot of things we don't do on our trip since we have our baby with us. But it's also been great to travel the world just the 3 of us, and with our baby by our side, every day brings new adventures, whether we go outside the hostel or not! There's gotta be more people jealous of Luna than any other baby I know of! She learnt to blush at a boy while getting off a flight, she learnt to say her first word using a language that neither of us are fluent in, she learnt to walk when at 3800 meters above sea level altitude where it's hard even for us to walk! So our baby Luna has been having a great time on this trip, but we are the ones dealing with the daily stresses of travelling the world with a baby.

Things as simple as catching an overnight bus or flight can easily become a nightmare of 2 days without sleep, which then becomes dangerous if you are both too sleepy to take care of the baby! Or running low on drinking water in the middle of the night, which suddenly becomes a big deal because if our daughter doesn't drink enough during the night then she will be screaming till morning! So travelling with a baby is guaranteed to put lots of pressure on any relationship, especially in tough moments such as when your baby is sick and you don't even know how to say "doctor" let alone find a reliable one, or something in the trip does not work to your original plan (which obviously happens a lot!) so you invariably start blaming each other for anything that is stressing you at the time.

And one of the hardest aspects is not being able to have a family member or trustworthy babysitter to take care of your baby every once in a while, so you literally need to be taking care of your baby 24-hours a day, every day during your trip. So it doesn't leave any time whatsoever for just the two of us to spend time together, which is particularly annoying in our case since we had a baby so soon after our wedding!

It certainly requires a hell of a lot of patience and a really strong relationship to handle travelling new countries & new cultures with a baby, but in the end we're obviously going to have a lot of great memories of the 3 of us together! And which baby doesn't want to spend 24-hours a day with both their parents? Anyway, I wish I had more time to spend alone with my wife and without all these stresses but I guess we're just gonna have to wait until we finally settle down before that happens!

Cheers,
Sherv.


This is Pinay Travel Junkie's entry to the Pinoy Travel Bloggers' February 2012 Blog Carnival themed "Why You Should Date a Traveler" (or in this case, why you should marry a traveler).

Hosted by the awesome Lauren of Epic Potato.





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37 comments:

killerfillers said...
February 14, 2012 at 5:05 PM

Happy hearts day to the both of you!

Relentless Karla said...
February 14, 2012 at 5:49 PM

WOW! Nice guest post Sherv. And I thought you were a man of few words! =) Thank you for giving us an insight of how hard it is to be a parent and a globe-trotting parents at that! No matter what you say though, we're still jealous! =) Kudos to you and Gay. You are a great team. Hope to see you guys again soon in Singapore and this time with Luna doll the explorer! Baile!

Riki said...
February 14, 2012 at 6:49 PM

congratulations on your round-the-world trip Gaye and Family :)) Have a blessed and safe trip ahead..

Ian | Going Places said...
February 14, 2012 at 7:27 PM

Traveling around the globe with your family before settling down is not crazy. Its crazier - I think!!! Haha... But as my personal travel motto says "Travel is an experience of a lifetime" - nothing could beat that! Have a pleasant trip, always...

Lauren said...
February 14, 2012 at 10:44 PM

Oh what a sweeeet post!! :D

And i know you two enjoyed every minute of it!


......... masochists........ :P

cheers Gaye!! :D

nina said...
February 15, 2012 at 4:35 AM

That's an awesome surprise gift! It's hard enough raising a child when you've settled down, so I'm sure it's even harder when you're traveling. But I'm sure you're enjoying your time together as a family, and it's forging a much stronger bond between you three :)

Happy Valentine's, Gay, Sherv and Luna!

Pinay Travel Junkie said...
February 15, 2012 at 4:50 AM

Karla, IKR?! Didn't see this coming... At all.

Pinay Travel Junkie said...
February 15, 2012 at 4:52 AM

Riki & Ian, gracias!

Pinay Travel Junkie said...
February 15, 2012 at 4:56 AM

Lauren, masochists are the new romantics!

Nina, Happy V-Day!

Filipina Explorer said...
February 15, 2012 at 6:13 AM

Now that's what I call real marital stress. It's hard enough to raise a baby at home, so I applaud you guys for being able to do it while on the road, constantly!

I still remember the Lonely Planet book surprise your husband pulled off, and now this. Ain't he just a sweetheart?

Happy V-day to your family and God bless all your trips!

Pinay Travel Junkie said...
February 15, 2012 at 8:00 AM

Never ceases to amaze me :)

Tin | The Average Jane said...
February 15, 2012 at 6:32 PM

Regardless of the hardships, that trip would make for one helluva great tale to tell your grandkids someday. =)

Mhe-anne Ojeda said...
February 15, 2012 at 6:37 PM

Wow! A true travel-blogger's way of celebrating Valentines and that's really sweet of Sherv to do that.HAPPY HEARTS DAY to the cool family!!

Kara / Travel Up said...
February 15, 2012 at 7:09 PM

Great post! :) Am amazed and inspired that the three of you are traveling the world as a family. And Luna really is the luckiest baby to experience all of that at such a young age. Those were cool anecdotes of her first steps and words in foreign countries!

Rizalenio said...
February 15, 2012 at 7:20 PM

Oh so sweet...the family that travels the world together. You both can write a book about this and I'm sure it will be a hit. Just please add a lot of photographs. :)

Pinay Travel Junkie said...
February 15, 2012 at 8:54 PM

That's sooo true Tin! Can't wait to share our story to Luna's lil earhtlings someday!

Pinay Travel Junkie said...
February 15, 2012 at 8:55 PM

Ate Mhe-anne, Happy Valentine's too!

Kara, thanks :)

Pinay Travel Junkie said...
February 15, 2012 at 8:56 PM

Lito, dunno bout that book but will definitely add more photos here!

Gladys | WanderingTandem.com said...
February 16, 2012 at 12:25 AM

love his valentine's post. love the part when he said everybody else think you're crazy, but you thought ur cool! definitely, you're one cool family to boot! more travels... more happy moments with Luna!

Lai Marie Mirasol said...
February 16, 2012 at 12:50 AM

sweeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeet! happy travel to the 3 of you.. happy valentines!!

Pinay Travel Junkie said...
February 16, 2012 at 1:09 AM

Glady, we'd like to call it crazy-cool :)

Pinay Travel Junkie said...
February 16, 2012 at 1:09 AM

Belated Happy V-day Lai!

Micamyx|Senyorita said...
February 16, 2012 at 10:50 AM

I feel the love and sincerity from this post <3 More blessings to Sherv, Gay and Baby Luna! <3

Edmaration etc said...
February 16, 2012 at 11:43 AM

Kilig naman. Call this blog a conjugal property!!! Looking forward for another guest post. Yeheee!

Pinay Travel Junkie said...
February 16, 2012 at 12:34 PM

LOL @ "conjugal property".

The SoleSisters said...
February 16, 2012 at 2:35 PM

So cute! Keep living the life we all aspire for! Thanks for sharing this.

Kaiz Belga said...
February 17, 2012 at 8:40 AM

I am not a baby but I envy Luna! ☺

More travels and fun for the three of you. 3

ch33k33.m0nk33 said...
February 18, 2012 at 8:39 AM

Holy Chimoly, traveling with a kid! I'm so glad I found your site. I've been trying to travel more last year and this year, under the misconception that I'll be stuck at home forever once I've got babies of my own. It's awesome to know that there are families out there who can make it work. :D

The Shades of Grey | Elal said...
February 19, 2012 at 6:12 AM

Sweet naman neto. Happy <3's season to the three of you!

The Nomadic Pinoy said...
February 22, 2012 at 10:09 AM

It's already hard work being parents at home base so this RTW is indeed going to challenge you more - I pray you all stay healthy down the road.

Bonzenti [Con Tour Blog] said...
February 22, 2012 at 11:45 AM

"Some would say that you're crazy. Other would say that you are extremely crazy. But at least you think that you are cool". I like this one, Ga-ye.

Enduring those months on the road with Luna was extremely tough.

Your wish will come true soon. Good Luck and be always safe while on the road. :-).

docgelo said...
February 26, 2012 at 10:21 AM

Mr. Sherv, Hello, Sir!
I'm one of the countless fans of your wife as she blogs your adventures around the globe. I honestly understand how it feels like traveling with a baby; despite she's angelic and all, she poops and cries too of course. Should you need a personal male-nanny cum GP slash tutor too, to take care of Luna, and all your health needs, I can be a very friendly travel companion. LOL! hehe..

ps : you're so blessed with a wonderful family and a beautiful life! keep on inspiring! (that goes to you, mommy gay!)

soloflightEd said...
March 1, 2012 at 2:29 PM

kakastress nga pakinggan coming from shervz. hahaha. parang di stressful kung ikaw nagsusulat gaye? hehe. belated happy hearts day to both of you and keep doing what you're doing cause you're inspiring a lot of people because of your passion for travelling.

inspired na naman ako because of this post. :D

soloflightEd said...
March 1, 2012 at 6:24 PM

great surprise for thepinaytraveljunkie, sherv!

just reading all the stress that comes with raising a family on the road seems truly tiring but thank you for continuing your passion for travelling gaye and sherv! you guys are an inspiration!

hope to do the same in the future. :D

Pinay Travel Junkie said...
March 2, 2012 at 7:59 AM

Ed, kakastress pakinggan kasi in a way... Complaint post ata ni Sherv ito. Hahaha!

TheFrugalWanderer said...
April 2, 2012 at 11:36 AM

parang nakakastress nga talaga to travel with a kid, most especially with a toddler, pero parang this is a fun way to raise a child. naisip ko rin na it's better travel the world while she's still young para kung magschool na sya, makasettle down na talaga kayo. without a doubt, you truly have a unique family. c=

Duncan said...
June 9, 2012 at 12:28 AM

I dont know how you do it, travelling with young ones in tow must be tough!

Duncan

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