My husband and I had the opportunity to go to Kauai for our anniversary last month…WITHOUT KIDS! It could not have been any more blissfully fantastic…except if we just had two more days! I have been to Hawaii six times - this was our fifth time together. Every big trip I’ve been on (Hawaii or elsewhere), I’ve gotten my nails done for the trip. That has always been a part of my vacation preparations. There’s the shopping, the packing, and the mani/pedi. I happened to get really sick leading up to this anniversary trip, and I just couldn’t get it done. I was super bummed.
The pretty nails weren’t the only thing that I didn’t do in preparation for this trip. I have never been to Hawaii (except when I knew I was pregnant with my daughter), without an intensely restrictive diet + over-exercising, leading up to departure. NYC for my birthday last spring, was the first big trip that I’ve gone on without diet preparations, followed by Palm Springs last August. However going to Hawaii as an Intuitive Eater who respects and appreciates my body (most of the time)…was extra special.
I didn’t have the stress, anxiety and exhaustion that comes with traveling with kids. I also didn’t have the stress, anxiety and exhaustion that comes from worrying about food, weight gain, shame, guilt, etc. I was a billion percent present with my husband, the beautiful scenery, and the fun activities that we had the privilege to enjoy.
We went on a coastal hike where I was taking in the gorgeous flowers, the colors of the ocean water below us, the sea turtle we could see from the cliff, and the surfers in the distance. It was a relatively short hike. In the past, I would have been so consumed with thoughts of the hike not being long enough to be “worth it,” or feeling lazy for not doing something more strenuous.
We spent two days on my favorite beach in the world (so far) - Hanalei Bay. The time flew by as we relaxed on the beach, swam, and took in the beauty around us. Prior to this trip, the last time that I was on that beach, I was frustrated that I couldn’t wear my Fitbit in the water to log all of my activity. I no longer wear a Fitbit or any related tracking device.
We went on a tubing adventure on a sugarcane plantation that was so fun, it felt like I was a kid again. I brought five bathing suits and wore them all confidently. In fact, I think I felt more comfortable in my bathing suits this trip, than I did on our last Kauai trip when I was significantly smaller. We laughed and laughed. We met lots of neat people. We ate delicious food. I read a fun page-turner of a book. We dreamed of island living.
There wasn’t a moment during or after the trip that I felt like I would have had a better experience had I gotten my nails done, or punished my body through diets/food rules prior to the vacation. I guarantee my husband didn’t think twice about my nails, and he very much appreciates my current body. I experienced more, I laughed more, I saw more, and I lived more because of the peace that eventually comes with rejecting the diet mentality.
Tiffany was born and raised in the Pacific Northwest. She lives with her husband, kids, and chocolate lab. Her favorite vacations so far (beyond camping in the family motorhome), have been to Kauai, Key West, New York City, and Sayulita. She looks forward to expanding that list!
A heartfelt thanks to Julie G Photography.