WHY YOU SHOULD BE SCARED TO TRAVEL WITH YOUR BABY (but why you should do it anyway)
This might be an unexpected title to a blog post for us, but I promise, it's not click bait. You should be scared to travel with your baby.
Leaving your comfort zone, your routine, your everyday life to go on a trip with your baby is nerve-racking—even for us. But I think a healthy fear of traveling with your baby is good, especially when it's to less developed countries. There are risks you are taking on and it's important to be aware of them, prepare for them, and mitigate them.
Being nervous isn't a good reason not to take on a trip with your little one though.
I was incredibly scared before our first big international trip with Zay. We went to Vietnam for a month, and the weeks leading up to it, I would be nauseous thinking about the trip. There were so many unknowns: transportation, different diseases and illnesses, new bacteria that Zay would be exposed to, and the fear of gastrointestinal illnesses since he had already started on solids. We channeled that nervous energy into being as prepared as we could be. We looked at the CDC's website and talked to our pediatrician and heeded their recommendations. We also didn't plan an itinerary for our trip because we wanted to take it at a pace that we felt comfortable with, and that worked well for us. We started the trip staying within a few hours of Ho Chi Minh City (in case anything went wrong, we were close to a good hospital) and ended the trip with a multi-day trek in a very rural part of Vietnam, staying in people's homes along the way. This was a natural progression of our comfort level and our understanding of the country.
We substituted hospitals for hospitality once we got comfortable.
So, of course you're nervous. It would be shocking if you weren't. But if traveling is your passion, or if you've been dying to go on a trip with your little one, don't let the nerves stop you. In my opinion, a healthy fear trumps complacency anyway, especially when it comes to your baby. Just be smart, be prepared, and have fun.