Portugal, Lost Opportunities, and Regret

To this day, we regret not taking that trip.


I told you that "next time I'll have to tell you about our move to Portugal."

Basically, we're hoping to move to Portugal. We've done our research, looked up the visa requirements, fees, and paperwork.


The only thing is -- we've never been to Portugal.


But that doesn't matter. It already has a special place in my heart.

Which is because it reminds me of my dad (who passed away from cancer 18 years ago).


You see, once upon a time, my husband, Greg, and I were a newly married couple. We had no children, but we did have a new (to us) 100-year-old house in a small farming town, and Greg had a career as a religion teacher that he loved.


My brother (whom Greg had never met) was a missionary for our church in Portugal, and my parents invited us to go with them to visit the country when my brother finished serving.


We already knew my dad had cancer. They had given him 3-6 months to live.

But he seemed to be doing fine.


We hemmed and hawed and considered it, but ultimately turned them down because we told ourselves:


"We want to save our money and 'be wise' and get ahead.

We'd have to put part of it on a credit card, and that's bad.

There will always be more opportunities to travel with them in the future."


My parents went and had an amazing time and created memories I wish I had been a part of.

Soon, we had adopted a baby, my dad was getting sicker, and less than two years later, he passed away.

He was only 47.


I never was able to travel with him to a foreign land.


To this day, Greg and I still regret not taking that trip.


That regret has been a driving force behind our life.

Now, when we have the opportunity to do something -- take a trip, try something new, take a risk -- we say 'Yes!'


Because you'll never know if you'll get another chance.


Next week, Greg and I will take our very first trip to Portugal.


I'll walk the cliff-lined beaches and think of my dad.


And we'll decide if it is a place we'll move to later this year.

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