When Life Doesn’t Go as Planned – From Israel to Ireland

The Intro…

Hey ya’ll! Did you know you can still have an amazing life even when plans go awry?

Recently, my son, daughter-in-law, and I visited Ireland. Now, this wasn’t the vacation we planned or booked. Uncontrollable circumstances forced us to make a choice, either call the whole thing off and stay home or make another plan. Together we decided to pivot and had an amazing time visiting Ireland. After much research, we discovered the best way to experience our Irish destinations was to rent a car and explore. The pin drops on our map guided us around the outer edges of the island touring the oldest distillery in the world, the oldest pub in the world, natural formations, and, of course, castles. Vacationing with my kiddos is always adventurous and I seemingly find sweet healing moments that become my most cherished souvenirs.

The Details…

Last year around September, we (see intro above) booked a trip to explore the Holy Lands in Israel and Jordan. Well, needless to say, war broke out a couple of weeks after solidifying air and ground travels. Thankfully, United Airlines smoothly transitioned plane tickets over to our pivot destination – Ireland. With a little over 4 weeks to plan, my son, daughter-in-law, and I plotted out points of interest and left it to timing and chance once in the country. Getting there was quite the struggle with winds diverting our plane after three turbulent landing attempts. The plane was running low on fuel and this warranted a diversion over to a Scotland airport to land and fill up in the outback fuel station (this is another story in and of itself – no, we didn’t even get off the plane or dock at a terminal…). Back in the air, the pilots battled heavy winds attempting another landing, which we finally did touch down while passengers all around were filling their little white bags from the seatback in front of them.

Once on the green land, we were off for the week to explore Irish culture.

The Why…

The trip started and ended with a night stay at the Clontarf Castle. Our little car with its left-sided steering wheel escorted us on the left side of the roads around the outskirts of the Emerald Isle. Adventures included the bookends of the Titanic, walking in Belfast along the tracks for wheeled instruments used during construction and rounding about standing on Cobh dock where land dwellers waved a last goodbye to the ‘unsinkable’ cruise liner carrying passengers to unknown ill fate.

Between nights beginning and ending in Dublin, the three of us trekked through rain and bits of sunshine exploring natural sites, Christmas markets, and castles. Renting a car gave us the opportunity to explore at our own pace but see much of the countryside dotted with castle/tower ruins. For planning, I was inspired by one website in particular: Ireland Before You Die (the entire site has boo-koos of info)

I would be remiss to only share highlights about our Ireland trip when there are moments – hard, hurt-filled feelings creep in. Now, my kiddos do not make me feel this but sometimes I just feel I am a third wheel. Like I am somewhat sad and feel alone without a person who could be in my life – traveling and doing life with me. Feeling like they are having the best time ever together and then here I am – single – by myself. Then comes the wisps of anger about life-shattering and maybe life could have been different. There are also those moments when I get triggered and upset – this is another story of me when completely soaked and cold and irritated and everything. We had low tire lights in the middle of who knows where, far from a gas station. Also, we didn’t make it to every destination our heart’s desired.

Simply put, life didn’t go as planned but the plan we traveled was amazing.

The Sum Up…

We booked one vacation but ended up where we were supposed to be. Honestly, the three of us were shocked when plans went awry but there is always an option to pivot. And when feelings arise, keep in mind, it’s feelings – those change if you get dry, eat some food or take a nap.

Even though life throws some altering events our way doesn’t mean we have to stop living. We make that choice of how we respond passed that moment. Essentially, there are two options – Live as a victim of the past or live as a victor from the past. You get to decide which life best fits you! Yes, that healing journey is lifelong but why not live an amazing life along the way – no matter what happens?

Now, the best souvenir I have is a fun story filled with amazing adventures – how we planned for Israel but ended up in Ireland – both start with I!

Please scroll on and enjoy more photos from my Ireland trip, November 2023!

Kinbane Castle

The Question…

Is there a time in your life you made plans and then had to pivot?

The Challenge…

Even though it may feel difficult, make plans and if you need to, pivot and make plans again – as many times as needed!

The Live Beyond It Encouragement…

Have a fantastic rest of your day and may you always pivot and create a fun, amazing plan in your life!

Thanks for stopping by…😊 See ya!

Photo credits on this post: Clemmie-Li Clyde

Carrick-a-Rede – closed due to high winds
Oldest Pub – Sean’s Bar
King John’s Castle – Can you spot my son up there?
Reginald’s Tower – Waterford
Cobh – Last dock for the RMS Titanic
Donegal Castle

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