Thursday, March 15, 2012

Re-Acclimating Myself to Someone Else in My Bed

Listening to: Rolling in the Deep  - Adele

 Mood: Veloceraptor-ish. Seriously – duck and cover.

So I’ve had an epiphany. I cannot write anything (blogs, manifestos, grocery lists) with the TV on. My ADD (no, I do not have ADD, more like a micro attention span) brain simply cannot process the two at the same time. I inevitably get sucked into the TV. And then I turn on Spider Solitaire and all hope is lost. Seriously. I am a boss at the Spider and get sucked into that ridiculous game more than I’d like to admit. On the other hand, some of my most brilliant ideas have come from some freethinking time on Spider.  Tough break TV. Lesson learned. For some reason, my ipod doesn’t do the same thing to my brain. I can be listening to (and indeed to my children’s chagrin, singing along) music and it enhances what I’m writing, not the other way around.

My long lost (well, as long and lost as 5 weeks can be) other half is coming home. Did I tell you he was going away? No? Yes? I never remember what I tell anyone, including the masses on the internet. My apologies if I’m repeating myself again. Anywho – the hubby had to go get his citizenship and do some work for the large multinational company he works with. This company will remain unnamed in the event that they actually want to remain unnamed and I’m not looking to get the husband fired here – that would suck.  He has been location-ally absent from our lives for the past 4.5 weeks. I say that because it is 2012, we have these handy things called telephones and Skype, thank the Spaghetti monster. Still. 

He’s coming home very late on Sunday.  I’m not sure how I feel about this, which is freaking me the hell out. I am nuts about my ball and chain. I have missed him sorely. The thing is, it has been 5 weeks – which is an awfully long time to get used to someone not being around. Namely – I have become accustomed to sleeping alone in my bed. I haven’t slept alone for more than a few days at a time since I got married 9 years ago. Its addictive people – you get used to the warm body next to you, even if that thing steals the covers when it’s freezing out and lays on you when it’s 90 bazillion degrees out.  It took me a full week to get used to sleeping alone and it is glorious. I would never wish to sleep alone if I had the choice to sleep next to the hubs – but wow. All the covers are mine, the fan is cranked up as far as I want it. I can sprawl out as much as I want. If I want all 4 pillows propped under various limbs, I can! 

As fun as it is to rhapsodize about bed space being mine, what concerns me most is readjusting to living like I’m married again. There is something insidious about physical distance while being in a relationship. It worms into your thinking and all of a sudden, you wake up one day and you’re separate entities living separate lives, connected by the tenuous strands of your relationship and your children (if you have them).  One of the most threatening things to a couple is growing apart. How much more easy is it to grow apart when you’re not actually together? The fact that I have not slept with my husband (in either sense of the word) in a long time sits uneasily in my mind. You forget the little idiosyncrasies (both the good ones and the bad) that come with someone else sharing your life. The past 5 weeks around here have been downright hellish as the crazy came out. These have been my battles to face. My husband, as much as he loves and supports me, has not been here to participate. He has been living his own reality in the states; one that only includes me and our kids when we Skype or he thinks of us. 

I compartmentalize what is probably more than healthy. Compartmentalization: The defense mechanism of champions. I missed the husband more than a reasonable the first 2 weeks. I pined, and pouted, and went off into some unhealthy, destructive mental space. The thing is, I still have a life to run here. Engaging in this type of thing when you have kids to raise, live in a foreign country, and have an employee to manage is generally very bad all around. So I did what I’m best at. I shoved it all in a mental box, shoved it on a brain shelf and decided to deal with it later. I believe this is known as putting your big girl panties on and dealing with it. Whatever. It wasn’t the soul crushing type of sad that comes with getting a divorce and being permanently separated…it was more like an involuntary relationship hiatus, only it wasn’t entirely involuntary. It definitely wasn’t wanted, it just happened to come along with a responsibility my husband had.  If there’s anything I’m really, really excellent at, it’s putting one foot in front of another and just moving on. So that’s been the mentality here. Just get through the day. Tomorrow will be one day closer to this being done. I’ve become exceedingly used to the dichotomy of noise at our house. During the day, I listen to nonstop monkey chatter from the girls. At night, it’s silent around here.  I have the feeling it will be odd to have my husband around, even though he’s not much of a chatterbox anyhow. It’s almost like we have to realign both of our separated lives back into one.  I’m really quite puzzled as to how military families and those who choose to live separately for whatever reason (career, etc) do it.

I know, I know, it’s only been a month and 1 week. I’m pretty sure this pervading sense of anxiety and  separate-ness  would only increase as time went on and make it hard to readjust to being a team again.
Hopefully we’ll never have to find out.


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