vīdl Co-Founder Rick Fessler Shares His “What if” Trip Journal

vīdl Co-Founder Rick Fessler Shares His “What if” Trip Journal

“Live every day like it could be your last.”

This is a phrase you may have heard repeated in popular culture. It’s a little extreme, isn’t it? We all have responsibilities that require us to plan for the future, thus acknowledging that today is likely not your final day.

But, what if? What if your next lunch with a friend is the last time you see them? What if your next family vacation is the last time you’re all together? 

Asking “what if” isn’t about filling our minds with fear over what might happen. It’s an acknowledgement that our life experiences are temporary, and a call to embrace every moment while it lasts.

Appreciating vīdl moments Before they Pass By

Journal Entries From Rick Fessler, vīdl CEO

It is day 3 of my first intentional “what if” vacation with my family. How is it going? I’ve been intentional about appreciating each moment, acknowledging that this may be the last time we all share an experience like this together. Even though we have another trip planned for later in the year, I’ve remained focused on getting the most out of our time together right now. 

I’ve brought my vīdl bottle along with me, and it’s helped remind me of what’s important. Even so, I’ve made my share of mistakes along the way.

Day 1 – A day of travel

Not bad. I maintained a positive attitude and didn’t let anything upset me (okay, my family might dispute this, so I’ll say I was mostly good). We got settled into our temporary residence, a lovely family vacation home belonging to one of my best friends. We spent the evening unpacking and admiring some amazing natural views the property has to offer. The treelines and open sky reminded me of some of the gorgeous pictures I’ve seen on screensavers at the office… the real thing is so much better.

Since the home belongs to a close friend, it’s likely we’ll be back again at some point. But, what if? What if he and I have a falling out? What if his family decides to sell the property? What if tragedy strikes either family and this is the last time we’re all here together in this place? I’m not going to take any of this for granted.

Day 2 – A day of acclimating

We’re at 10,000 feet now, and need time for our bodies to adjust. We decided to postpone skiing for one more day. I took this break as an opportunity to take it all in. We all went into town and did a little shopping for essentials we didn’t already have. I studied the joy on my little girl’s face and was attentive to my wife’s wish to make some purchases that were perhaps less “essential”. The truth is I admire her ability to shop and find deals. She never pays too much for anything because of her excellent attention to detail. If she can’t find the deal, then it wasn’t meant to be.

As I mentioned before, I have made my share of mistakes, even on this trip. My missed opportunity today was not suggesting a date night with my wife. We’re traveling with another couple, so arranging this would be easy. But, the old me kicked in and I didn’t ask “what if?”. I assumed she wouldn’t want to eat out since we were staying in a nice house with a fully-stocked kitchen. 

Now, before you think even less of me, understand that I LOVE to cook and am not half bad at it. I didn’t assume she would cook for me or anything like that. But I did assume she’d rather not go out, and I missed an opportunity by simply failing to ask the question.

Luckily for me, she was fine with staying in. We decided we’d have a date night together after we got back from our vacation. She agreed, “Why miss one night in this amazing house?” Phew… I got lucky. Nevertheless, I broke my own rule by neglecting to ask the question, “what if?”

Day 3 – Ski day!

This is normally a stressful event for me. I spend all my energy making sure everyone is dressed appropriately, getting everyone in their gear, getting skis on, and getting to the first lift. This time, IT WASN’T STRESSFUL! My crazy idea worked. I asked myself, at the start of the day, what if this is the last time I GET to do all of this? Today was a huge breakthrough for me. I struggle with impatience, so you can imagine days like this usually get off to a rocky start. Not this time. Being intentional about appreciating the moment made the whole day go so much smoother, and the family enjoyed some fun time out on the slopes.

Day 4 – Wish me luck.

I’ll end things here, but wish me luck as I continue to approach the remainder of this trip with a “what if” mindset. Better yet, with my family luck! I’ve seen how this mindset has helped me enjoy this vacation with my family, and they’ve responded positively to this change in me. I know I’ll continue to make mistakes along the way, but for right now, we’re here together, and that’s all that matters.

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