Seven Year Journey Celebrated on Cloud Nine

Today is our seven year anniversary. On August 14, 2005, hundreds (we don’t quite know the count…) of people traveled from all corners of the earth to celebrate our commitment to each other in Kerala. We got married in The Santa Cruz Basilica, a Portuguese church built in 1558. It was around that time that Portuguese explorer Pedro Alverez Cabral discovered Brazil (on his way to India via Cape Town, no less). After getting married in a Portuguese church we think it’s apt to be closing off seven years of marriage in a former Portuguese colony.

Given that we are both world wanderers since birth, we have chosen to celebrate each of our anniversaries with a trip. In 2006 we were set to mark one year in the Lake District of England for a friend’s wedding. I had to work so Sandeep went a few days ahead of me to support the groom. While he was gone I started losing sensation in my body. A neurologist told me I may have multiple sclerosis. Looking back I’m not sure if I was more disappointed at the thought of canceling the trip or scared of the prognosis. I called Sandeep in tears and he was on the next flight back in NYC. We ended up spending our first anniversary testing our vow to care for each other in sickness and in health. It wasn’t the Lake District, but somehow, in a sterile NYC clinic, our appreciation and love for each other inexplicably deepened.

In 2007 and 2008 we went to Maine. We drove to what seemed like the end of the earth, rented a cabin, ate lobsters and cut ourselves off from the world. We celebrated our fourth year in Portugal, where our love for the culture was solidified over copious amounts of port and dorado. The travel escapades continued at a castle in Salamanca, Spain in 2010. We’re not ones to think of such romantic destinations and were there to celebrate another friend’s wedding. It seems that a lot of people get married over the summer months because we marked our six year anniversary at another wedding in Toronto.

After the realization that I had a chronic disease, Sandeep and I reevaluated our lives. We decided to have kids sooner than we had originally planned, and our identity as parents has existed nearly as long as our identity as spouses. We wanted to focus on creating new experiences together as a family. The kids, as much as they perplex us, have made our journeys as a couple all the more meaningful.

We’ll be spending our seven year anniversary flying from Brazil back to NYC, ending the last international stop in our around the world journey. A Boeing 767 is not a romantic venue in the conventional sense, but for two souls bound by travel it’s perfect. This ten month journey has confirmed that we value each other and shared experiences more than we care about stuff. The things that accompanied us for 10 months are packed one for last time into two bags and ready to make their way back to their port of origin. We’re getting ready to start the next chapter of our lives. With each other as co-captains, and our two babies as in-flight entertainment, as it’s bound to be an adventure.

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Filed under Brazil, New York City

26 Responses to Seven Year Journey Celebrated on Cloud Nine

  1. wai mei

    happy anniversary!

  2. keri

    Hands down your best blog post diya. You guys are a beautiful family.

  3. MamaJojo

    Happy anniversary to my two favorite pilots! Here’s to many more adventures and travels with overweight baggages of love! Love Papa & Mama Jojo

  4. Kelly Walker

    Happy Anniversary! 🙂 Thank you for sharing your thoughts and experiences! I have stumbled upon your blog this week and have loved reading it. We are starting our family adventure of travel now. We have sold everything because we too value experiences over things. We have a 3 year old and a 10 month old so I have loved that we are not the only crazy ones wanting to travel the world with little ones! 🙂 I hope your transition back to life in NY is a smooth one. I am going to continue reading your past posts and glean wisdom from your experiences.

    • Diya

      Welcome to our blog. How exciting that your family is about to embark on your adventure. The ages of your kids will make for some amazing experiences. You’ll find that not too many families do this with kids so young, but we think it’s a great time – the kids are portable, go-with-the-flow for the most part, and not too picky yet. Please let us know if we can assist in any way.

  5. Amlan

    Glad to have been a small part of your journey. Thank you. Wish the co-captains many more happy anniversaries and adventures.

  6. Susan

    Diya – Reading your blog has become part of my morning routine. Thanks for sharing all these wonderful experiences. Hope to see you guys in Chicago or NYC soon!

    • Diya

      We are so flattered to have been a part of your life for these past few months. Thank you so much for following our journey and being a part of it.

  7. Shanti Desouza

    Wish you a very happy anniversary Diya and Sandeep! May each day be more special than the other and may you both and your little ones have many more wonderful travels! love from Cyrus, Shanti, Johann and Saloni.

  8. Daphne

    Hello Diya and Sandeep. It’s been one exciting journey and I thank you for sharing your experiences and what it so dear to your hearts. I am so glad our paths crossed in Chiangdao. God bless you both as you enter into the next season of your lives.

    • Diya

      How wonderful that you followed our journey back to NYC! Thank you for being a part of this adventure. We still remember fondly our meeting in Chiangdao. All the best to your family in Singapore.

  9. Jen

    I’ve really enjoyed your blog. Best wishes for the future and I hope you’ll keep this blog going!

    • Diya

      We are so happy you stayed through the journey. We plan to write for a few more weeks (at least) and share our reflections and stories about settling back in.

  10. Geetha Thomas

    What a beautiful post! I can’t believe how fast the past ten months have flown and that you’ll be back in NYC soon. So looking forward to seeing you guys and catching up!

  11. larry Malarkar

    Wow! What a way to end the trip.
    Looks like you have inspired quite a few people. Any blog reader passing through India is welcome to contact us – specially if you have a couple of kids.
    Larry & Perveen

    • Diya

      Thanks Dad! Yes, all readers are welcome to visit my parents in Goa where you’ll see the ‘real goa’, meet my fabulous and hospitable parents, be treated to a farm-to-table meal and meet one adorable and crazy dog.

  12. Indu

    Beautiful post..Welcome back guys!..Hope to see you before you leave us again!

  13. Eunah

    What a beautiful family you have. Thank you for sharing your story.

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