November 18, 2009
When Your Kid Gets the Travel Bug: Tips from the Trenches
A couple of weeks ago I posted about our family trip to Nicaragua . This photo is from our zipline tour above the bay of San Juan del Sur. It was almost the last day of our trip, and the experience had been fun, smooth and exhilarating. But despite our vigilance of all things food & water, our eldest daughter came down with a stomach bug as we were packing up.
She got dehydrated so quickly that after 24 hours air travel was out of the question, and we needed to seek medical attention (and an IV) at a hospital in Managua. Although she recovered the next day, I don't think I ever fully recovered.
To anyone considering a similar trip, here is what I wish I had done better...
1)Partnered more closely with my pediatrician during the planning stages to come up with an action plan in the event of a travel bug. Although I called our pediatrician's office to let them know where we were going and inquire about meds we could take along, that phone conversation didn't accomplish much. Moving forward, I'll plan a face to face with our doctor, complete with a checklist and prescriptions.
2)Known which medical facility we should use in case of an emergency, and check in advance to ensure it provides reasonable medical care. A bad situation was made worse by the fact that we didn't know the location of the right hospital.
Two years later I can finally look at the hundreds of pictures and memories we created together as a family in the beautiful country of Nicaragua. I can see their smiling faces on the beaches, playing with the other kids. I can see them on horseback. I can see them flying down the zipline. I can see them at the playground in the town square with the local kids. I can see them at Thanksgiving dinner with our dear friends who live there. But those memories came with tough lessons, and the least I can do is pass those along.
And can you believe it? The next year we went in the complete opposite direction and headed up to cruise Alaska. What did my youngest come down with just after that trip? Mono. No kidding. Maybe, it's just our luck.
This post is part of the Delicious Baby blog round-up, where more travel tips and stories await!