I have been kicking around this idea for awhile, as we begin to truly meld together this new family of ours (we’re eight months old! Happy melding to us!) that I would love to log our adventures somewhere, and begin to slowly increase the scope of our travels to include international locales.  As the kids begin to get older, they’re up for more amazing  exploits, and we’ve been doing so many fun, amazing things together.

I’d just started last week to make a website, thinking that I would write first about our Wisconsin River escapades of last summer, or our Ledge Park climbing feats of last weekend, or family intros, or maybe the rock climbing we’ve started doing together.  And someday I would get a passport, and all of the kids would get a passport, and we’d travel and laugh and annoy each other to greater heights of personal and family growth.

I never imagined that this would be my first post.

Last week, my daughter Ella undertook an amazing opportunity with Xperitas, and took off on her first international adventure, to France.  She is bilingual, and has been working up to this trip since she was in the first grade.  At the ripe old age of 12, she was ready for independent travel, far from Mama’s oversight.  Our close-knit community and family drew together to get this amazing, self-reliant, outgoing, huge personality of my daughter onto foreign soil.  She was to travel with a group from her school from Thursday 15 June, through the weekend and into the following Saturday through Paris, into Avignon, and then to stay with a host family until she finally flew back home.

Tuesday of this week, she and her host family were spending a fun day out on the town, and decided to throw in a trip to the trampoline park.  As a result, I am sitting on the floor by gate M5 in the international terminal of O’Hare airport, next to my emergency passport and pack, ready to fly out to Paris via Dublin to spend time with Ella as she undergoes surgery for the broken leg she sustained Tuesday evening.

She is okay.  As okay as a pain-fearful kid with a newly broken leg away from her Mama can be.  She is talking, and relaxing, and the mom who was spending the day with her today called her a rockstar kiddo and said that she even got part of a smile.  She is tired.  She is full of morphine, and far from home.

It has been a hell of a journey.  I didn’t hear about the accident until very late France time on Tuesday, and since then I have been in a whirlwind of phone calls, emails, texts, and messages with the hospital (guys, I do NOT speak French), travel organization, insurance company, state department, close family and friends….I’ve been scrambling to get my ass on a plane and make sure all of the tiny details are taken care of when I’m gone, all with about an 18hr turnaround.  Jeff has been amazing.  Dylan, and Aiden, and Seamus have been amazing (at some point I’ll introduce all of these guys to you *grin*).

The medial distal tibia of her right leg is fractured.  The travel insurance company has been amazing and they’re flying me out to be with her.  I have a ton more to say, but these are the basics, and so I’m going to hit publish on this puppy, and if there’s wifi on the plane you’ll hear from me again soon!

Best, you guys!

Talk to you oh-so-soon,