The Bucket List Trot Around the Globe
During those long eight months of “house arrest,” Alyssa and her husband began thinking about what they wanted to do when it was all over. “Where can I take you?” he asked. “You name it. Anywhere.” Not knowing if she would even survive the transplant treatments, they needed a goal, a plan for the future, something to hold on to and work toward. “Santorini,” came the reply.
Thoughts of the trip to Greece kept Alyssa’s spirits up. Even in the darkness of night, she would whisper, “I’m coming … I’m coming … I’m coming …” Something to hold on to.
In 2010, while recovering from the final transplant, a friend invited her to Spain. After redoing all the vaccinations that had been effectively wiped out by the transplants, it was off to Barcelona, Seville, and Madrid. When friends held their wedding in Costa Rica, she wasn’t about to miss that either. And she threw in a little extra action of her own there, repelling down a waterfall, zip lining through the jungle, and relaxing in the natural hot springs of an active volcano.
Then it was off to the magical Maldives … Santorini, Greece … and Istanbul, Turkey, rounding out eight months of travel. Eight months of “house arrest” followed by eight months of travel. Now that’s balance. And that’s how you go through a bucket list … and when you get through it, you start a new one.
“There’s nothing like thinking you might die to really want to live, and I’ve been so blessed to be able to really do that,” says Alyssa. “The gift of something like this is that you no longer say “well, maybe one day.” Instead you say, “how about now?” I joke that I truly am the luckiest girl alive, for so many reasons.”
Next: The Amazing Life That’s Unfolded