Sunday, May 10, 2009

Traveling Man

One thing about having a husband who travels a lot for work is that you get used to it. Not in a good way, like you prefer it or anything, but over the course of each business trip, you adjust from operating in survival mode to functioning fairly well in single-mom mode. Then hubby comes home, with a suitcase of dirty laundry and different priorities and work vents to unload, and there’s an adjustment period. Not that it’s bad to have him back, just that it can be hard, especially if you’re as much of a control freak as I am, to switch hats in mid-stride, from sole parent back to joint parent, allowing for different discipline styles, opinions on appropriate volume levels for children’s voices, just how much mess is tolerable (from adults as well as kids), or how long a child has to sit at the table before an uneaten meal before being excused.

After a couple of months of business trip after business trip, hubby and I have now had three blissful weeks in the same city together. It’s been a long time since we’ve had this kind of togetherness, it was overdue, and I’m valuing every minute of it. Not just the extra hands for evening baths or dishes or tickle sessions with the girls, although I certainly appreciate all of that, but mostly it’s just been nice to have my best friend back, sitting on the couch with me after the kids are down each night, laughing with me about some nonsense a family member said that day, or the time the dog got trapped inside his dog bed, or a great line on a TV show. These are the things you lose when your connection is limited to a 20-minute phone call each evening, when you’re both too tired to think and can’t remember the list of household issues you wanted to discuss, much less a distant friend’s hilarious status update on Facebook that morning.

Hubby’s boss is already giving him a list of clients he needs to visit, across the country and around the world, and tomorrow he boards a plane for another business trip. While this great little spell of daily togetherness is coming to an end, I hope I remember a few things while he’s out of town this week. I’m going to try to forget sharing so many updates about school events or getting his opinion on house maintenance needs, and try to focus on a few funny things each day to share. After all, a little laughter together at the end of each day is the best way to connect.

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