Monday, September 12, 2005

a full-time marriage

As I've mentioned before, Josh and I had a part-time marriage up until he returned from Costa Rica in July. By part-time, I mean that he traveled 4+ days a week for the 3 years we've been married. He'd never had a stretch of time without a plane ticket purchased for some future flight, whether it be next week or next month. The longest stretch we spent together without traveling was about 3 weeks.

I joke with people who ask how we do this, that we got married, but have a part-time marriage to ease us into the full-time stuff. The last time we lived in the same city was college! Over 5 years ago! It has been a long time, and we were happy to see it end.

We would sometimes talk about the benefits of such a lifestyle, frequent fliers miles, hotel points, independent lives and friendships, the ability to move to Connecticut, then New York, then Massachusetts or wherever my job might take us. In college, we might argue and then tearfully and dramatically make-up without really discussing the issue. When you are separated by thousands of miles, though, that becomes an impossibility and suddenly communication skills come at a premium. We did learn to communicate better during the four and a half years of travel pre and during-marriage. We also made sure to appreciate our time together on the weekends. Absence does sometimes make the heart grow fonder. It sometimes makes you want to fling the phone against the wall, too.

The downsides of this consulting lifestyle are pretty obvious. I missed him, I had to take the brunt of the housework, organizational details, dog care, family cards and gifts and visits. The worst part for me, though, was that after traveling all week, Josh had little energy or desire to take weekend trips or make plans. He was always exhausted, and after some weeks of no sleep, highly irritable too.

But thankfully, that lifestyle is over now. I find it hard to express what a pleasure it is to sleep beside him every night and wake up next to him every morning. Every Sunday night he gleefully slides into bed and informs me that he does NOT have to get up at 4am to catch a flight! Hurray!

It is an adjustment too, I can't lie. I am used to leaving a mess until Thursday afternoon when I do a mad scramble to clean up, and now I struggle to keep my clothes hung and my dishes thrown into the dishwasher. I can't leave my toiletries strewn across the bathroom sink or my pajamas on the floor. I have a full-time marriage now.

This morning, Josh had a later class and we decided to go out for breakfast before he dropped me off at the subway. I groaned when he shook me awake at 6:30am and Josh told me that if I'd rather sleep in, we could do breakfast another time. But I looked over at him, reminded myself of what life without him on weekday mornings was like, and jumped out of bed with a spring in my step.

I'd give up sleep anytime to hear his voice instead of the buzzer every morning. This full-time marriage is worth the lack of sleep.

22 comments:

Chatty Cricket said...

We like having the hubs around!! Yay for full time marriage!

liz said...

This is such a lovely and sweet post.

Jill said...

I'm glad that you get to see your husband almost every day now! It says a lot about the strength of your relationship that you were able to stay so close emotionally despite so many miles between you for all those years.

Chris said...

We used to have a part time marriage too. And it was an adjustment when it ended
though thankfully a happy one.
I love your 101 list. I could relate to most of them, especially the boyfriend breaking up with you because you were smart.
From a clumsy, bruised only child who always wanted lots of kids ;-)

Suzanne said...

I'm glad you and your husband are full-timers now. The side benefits nothwithstanding, that must have been a pretty stressful way to live.

And once you've become reacclimated to having each other around all the time, you can let those toiletries pile up again!

Honey Bunny said...

oh! my hubs-to-be wakes me up every morning, too. even on his day off. i love that about him!

Running2Ks said...

Oh, this is so special. What you both have is something to appreciate. Sounds to me like you transitioned great!

Songbird said...

And if you leave your toiletries strewn about, well...

Angry Pregnant Lawyer said...

Just wanted to say "hooray!"

Piece of Work said...

Aw!!! What a sweet post. I'm glad you guys are rediscovering each other.

amygeekgrl said...

Congrats on having the hubby back full-time!!
Jody and I had a long-distance romance for several months before I moved to live with him (we were in different states and had met on the Internet). In a way, things seemed easier when we were apart and always had our lovely reunions and wonderful times together. But after I moved and we were in constant close quarters we had to make adjustments. It wasn't easy, but we have been together for over 7 years now and still going (mostly) strong. ;)
Glad to hear you guys are adjusting well. :) Enjoy your full-time marriage.

ccw said...

What a sweet post! So glad you are enjoying and appreciating your full-time marriage!!

Ninotchka said...

What a sweet post! Glad to hear you're adjusting so nicely. :)

Phantom Scribbler said...

Awwwwww!!!

KLee said...

Glad to know that he's no longer travelling so much.

I'm glad that you popped out of bed. I know it made his day that you chose to be with him rather than catching that extra few minutes of sleep! :)

Congrats!

RussianViolets said...

Oh, HL, how sweet! I'm happy for you both.

peripateticpolarbear said...

aw....

Girl said...

Wow...how fun that I just found your post. I am writing this sitting on the boys couch. He is a road warrior and the 1 1/2 years of dating we have had has mostly been on the weekends. My emotions have run the gammut on Sunday afternoons when I drop him off at the airport. At first I was indifferent, then I got sad for a while...now I am back to indifference.

We're going to Scotland today for 10 whole days. It may be the longest we have been together yet. I'm not really worried, we have traveled together before, but your post reminds me of how thankful I am on the weekday mornings that I do get to wake up next to him.

Thank you for sharing it. And thank you for defining it as "Part Time" marriage. I hadn't heard that term before, and it really is nice to see that I am not the only one.

--Girl

Girl said...

OMG!! AND you are in Boston, too!

Weeeee.....

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