Several times a year my husband disappears for 10-14 days at a time to travel to Ethiopia for work. He just returned from one such trip.
Before he leaves people always asks me “Will you be okay?” and give me a pitiful look like I’m a lovesick 16-year-old who can’t stand to be apart from her boyfriend for the length of History class.
We’ve been married 20 years. I’ll be fine.
Don’t get me wrong. Love him to death. Miss him while he’s gone. Super happy whenever he gets back.
It’s kind of fun. Wait, maybe fun isn’t the right word. That makes it sound like I’m out clubbing ’til 1 a.m. every night. I’m not. I have kids to feed, homework time to get through, a taxi service to run and a bedtime to enforce.
But we’re both pretty independent people. We always have been. Before we had kids there was even a six-month period where I lived 4.5 hrs away M-F due to a work promotion/transitioning out of Army situation.
The point is, neither of us get weepy or clingy. Plus, it helps that we know the other person is having a great time. Mark loves his trips to Ethiopia (it’s like a second home) and so I’m glad he gets to do that as part of his job. When I’m traveling to speak to adoptive parents, he knows I’m in my element and loving every second.
- I warm the “banned” Scentsy scents. (If you don’t know what Scentsy is, it’s like scented candles only way better because the wax is melted by a small light bulb so no flame – safer, cleaner, etc.) I try my best not to buy super flowery scents, but on my last purchase only 1 of my 4 scents met the “super sniffer/allergy man” test. So when he’s gone I get to enjoy Beach and Kahiko Hulu. I even moved my Scentsy warmer up to the bedroom – GASP!
- I stay up ENTIRELY too late watching TV and chick flicks. Like 1-2 a.m. late. Which really isn’t healthy when you have to get up at 6:30 to get kids to school. How long til they drive themselves? Inevitably after a few nights I have an “early to bed” night and then start all over again.
- I make the bed. Sure I could make it all the time, but it’s so much easier when it’s just my side messed up and it takes a quick 5 seconds. His covers are all over the place so, despite the fact that I love a made bed, I rarely make it otherwise.
- I’m off the hook for dinner. Well, pretty much. We eat a lot more frozen pizza, hot dogs, grilled cheese, etc. while dad’s gone. Plus some nights I just tell them “fix whatever you want”. Not that Mark cares when I do these easy meals when he IS home, but I feel less guilty since the whole family isn’t together.
- I can eat without worrying if my chewing is disturbing him. There’s a whole other post in that issue, but basically Mark has “super hearing” (along with the “supper sniffer”) and frequently I bring a snack into the den and 60 seconds later he’s unplugging his laptop to go to a different room. Yes, my mouth is closed. No, I’m not chewing super loud food. He just has hyper sensitive hearing.
- I buy fresh flowers. Again, it’s the nose/allergy issue. Poor guy. On the rare occasions when I do have fresh flowers, they spend most of their time in the laundry room. Which kind of defeats the purpose. So this week I enjoyed a pretty vase of mixed flowers by my desk.
What about you? Is there something you do when your spouse is out of town to help make the time go easier?