Who Plans Your Vacations?

Do you plan your vacations? Would you want your mom to plan a vacation for you? Learn about one mom who did that for her daughters.

With the release of The Promised Plan only a few weeks away, we’re finishing up an interview series to get readers ready to dive into the book.

Today, I’ve invited the younger sister from my small cast of characters to talk with us about the trip her mother planned. Thanks for stopping in, Krista.

KRISTA: (Smiles tightly) Sure. But I don’t know that the trip Mom planned is going to happen.

AUTHOR: Oh? Well can you tell us a bit about it anyway.

KRISTA: (Nods) Sure. About a year ago, Mom called me up and said she was planning to take a girls’ trip to Victoria BC (Smiles softly) She’d traveled there with Dad several times and always came back raving about the gardens and the flowers and how everyone should visit.

AUTHOR: Sounds like she wanted to share that joy with you. Who else was invited on this girls’ trip?

KRISTA: Apparently, Mom and Merci—that’s my niece—cooked the idea up at their annual birthday shopping trip. (Blinks rapidly) Mom wanted it to be the four of us—her, Merci, me, and (shakes her head) Lacey.

AUTHOR: I can tell by the expression on your face that you didn’t think that would happen. Can you explain that?

KRISTA: (Gazes wistfully into the distance) I wish I could. Shortly after my sister’s divorce, things started going wrong for her. I tried to help (shrugs) but life get in the way, you know? I couldn’t stop people from hurting her, no matter how much I wanted to.

AUTHOR: By people, do you mean the people at her church? Your niece mentioned a lot of anger toward them.

KRISTA: (Nods) And people at her kids’ school where she volunteered for years. Friends she’d known long before she got married dropped her, too. I couldn’t believe the rumors (Purses lips in disgust) But then she stopped returning my calls, claiming she was swamped with work.

AUTHOR: So she pulled away from you. That’s hard.

KRISTA: I let her. I was working full-time and going to school to finish up my Master’s degree. (Sighs) I’ve always wanted to be a teacher, and I let my drive to get the best grades keep me from being a good sister. Or daughter.

AUTHOR: What do you mean?

KRISTA: (Wipes a tear) I hate hospitals, so I didn’t visit when Mom was admitted. And she was in there every few months that last year. (Sighs) She almost died from this stem cell transplant that the doctor said would give her five cancer-free years. (Shakes her head) She never fully recovered her strength from that.

AUTHOR: Cancer. No one wants to hear that diagnosis. But what does this have to do with the trip?

KRISTA: (Swallows) Mom knew things were strained between Lacey and me. She planned to corner us on the trip, make us talk things out. (A tear courses down her cheek) But she didn’t live long enough to carry out her plan.

AUTHOR: But you can take the trip to Victoria anyway, right? Carry out the plan for her.

KRISTA: (Shakes head) Maybe. But I doubt Lacey will agree to go. She’s got work and school and bills to pay and even more excuses. I don’t know if she’d forgive me anyway.

AUTHOR: For not being there after the divorce?

KRISTA: For not being there for Mom at the end. For letting everyone down. For putting my dream before everything else. (Gulps) And other things she doesn’t even know she should be angry about.

AUTHOR: I want to ask about that, but I think you should talk it out with your sister first. It would only make things worse if she heard it from someone else.

KRISTA: (Twists lips as if tasting something sour) No one else knows. But it’s the reason I haven’t gotten the teaching job I want. And now the hiring season is ending. (Waves) I need to go now. (Shuffles away, shoulders slumped.)

Poor Krista. It looks like there are a few secrets that might make the reconciliation planned for this vacation to Victoria difficult for her, too.

Thanks for joining this short interview series. Read all about how things turn out for Lacey, Mercedes, and Krista on May 9. You can pre-order your digital copy of The Promised Plan now.

Have you ever taken a trip planned by someone else? How did it turn out?

What do you think? Add to the discussion here.