I am home. I have been off the boat for almost a month now. I knew going into the Oceans of Hope experience that something would change, but I assumed it would not be that major. I assumed I would experience something and then go back to my “regularly scheduled life.” This did not happen.
I am happy to be home and be with my son and my husband, but I also miss being on the water. I miss being with my MS friends… the people that I didn’t have to talk to, that I could just be with and no one had to say anything, but we all had this bond.
This trip was trans-formative, some people say like giving birth. The good, the bad, the ugly (well there wasn’t much ugly). Upon my return everyone asked me how it was, and it has been hard to respond. It was amazing, different, unexpected. There were difficult times and it is good to remember those. But there were also wonderful times, like seeing the dolphins swim next to the boat helping us with our journey and listening to music at night under the stars. I don’t know when we actually bonded as crew. I can’t place it, but we did. We shared experiences and became closer because of it.
Before I ever sailed on Oceans of Hope I remember seeing the crew that crossed the Atlantic arrive in Boston and thinking, “Wow! I wonder if I will be that close to the crew I will sail with. I hope so!” And I am. I realize now that my life was not complete without this journey and without the people along the way. If anyone with MS asks me if they should do it, I would say yes. Go do it. But know it is not easy and not always fun. You will thank yourself and Sailing Sclerosis for allowing you this time and adventure.
Happy New Year!!!