It has been my dream since I was last there when I was fifteen years old. For my 35th birthday this year, my parents are buying me a round-trip flight to Denmark. I asked my dad if he would join me. He said “Yes!”
This particular dream was one I put onto my 2012 treasure map, and I have visualized it happening pretty consistently since then. Now that dream is about to become a reality. I am going to Denmark!
My father was born and raised in Denmark and my mother was born and raised in Finland. They met when my mom was 19 at a club in Helsinki and fell in love. It would be a few years of writing love letters and having a long-distance relationship that they would become married and travel the world together, wherever my dad’s work would take him.
I was born in Maryland, where we lived for a short while. After Maryland, we moved to Wisconsin and my sister was born. Then we picked up and moved across the world to a small town near Copenhagen, Denmark.
I spent about five years of my childhood in Denmark and attended school through second grade. It was a formative time for me, and Danish was my native tongue. It was the first culture that was my own and a culture I still identify with. Although I have lived in the United States since I was nine years old, I haven’t lost my Danish roots.
A few years ago I took a similar trip with my mom, who took Alan, Mia and me to Finland. I have never lived in Finland and I do not speak Finnish, but it is a part of my blood, too. I met family I never knew I had. I saw the house where my mother and her four siblings grew up. I saw my grandfather one last time before he passed away. It was an amazing trip.
I will be away from my family for eleven days. I will miss them and they will miss me. So much. I am a little fearful of being so far away and of not being able to touch them and see them for so long; this is something I have never done before. But it is something I have to do and will never regret. I will come home from my trip and they will forget that I was ever gone, but the memories will live in my mind forever.
I can’t wait.