I have always wanted to travel to far off places and to see the world. That wish hasn’t been granted to me as yet, but a much bigger gift has been. I have come to understand that how the world views you is important, and how they treat you is a direct result of that. I have also come to learn that understanding yourself and trying to better yourself isn’t as easy as some make it out to be. All of this was learned on my two trips to St. Croix, the island where I grew up. Those two experience where very uplifting and allowed me to realize that I am viewed in a way that I cannot accept. The image I thought I was portraying is not so. The one that others see isn’t flattering and I hope that through those two life changing journeys I have corrected that or have at least begun to.
The first time that I went to St. Croix the only thing that I was interested in at first was spending time with my nephew, who at the time he was about 2 years of age. While my brother and his wife was at work and my nephew was at daycare I spent all of my time reading books and when they were there I was still reading books. I ended up spending next to no time at all with my family. I didn’t even leave the house unless I was forced to. I am ashamed to say that at the time I behaved very self-centeredly.
At first arriving I had all the right intentions. We went to the beach, Hotel on the Key, and to some of a festival, mango festival, but things quickly deteriorated. I put myself into a bubble that didn’t include the people that I was there to interact with. For the month that I was there books became my life and I didn’t care that it was, because I was happy.
When I left I was under the assumption that it was a good visit only to find out that that was not so. Everywhere I went my family admonished me about my behavior and I came to recognize that I was behaving like I was self obsessed. Change isn’t easy though. The next visit was better, but not perfect. I found that you can’t just up and decide that you are going to change things. It takes time and a whole lot of effort.
That second trip I spent a lot more time with my family. I didn’t completely cut out the books, but I was more open to doing things with those around me. I even went outside and played with my nephew and my new niece. My family even went horseback riding. No one can say this time around that I spent all of my time doing things that did not include them. I also found that spending time with them could be just as enticing as a book, not to say that I never stopped and picked up a book. There were times of major and minor setbacks, but I learned that perseverance is the key to change.
Between these two instances I realize that change is something that has to happen gradually and will not happen when you want it to. I wanted to see instant results, but instead I began to see a healthy decline instead of being able to snap my fingers and the problem was complete. Life is worth the effort of change, however especially if it means not missing the years of innocence in children.
Horseback riding- www.paulandjills.com
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