Happy Monday all ya’ll beautiful people!
I hope you’ve had a wonderful couple of weeks! Sorry, I haven’t been around much, I’ve been sick and just couldn’t shake it. I haven’t felt this tired, all the time, over doing nothing in a very long time. But I’m on the road to recovery, and today I have part three of my no nonsense sometimes harsh answer for my friend who asked,
“Hey! So, my husband and I are contemplating a move/change of occupation that may put him on a schedule where he has to be far away from us weekly. Can I ask what your experience has been like? The awesomeness and the ugly.” – friend
It can SUCK to have a spouse that travels for work, especially if you have kids. It’s a ton of work and will place strain on your marriage, your relationship with your children, and relationships with the outliers in your life.
So, that’s the ugly, but I always follow up with some helpful hints, strategies, words of encouragement based in real life for you to take with you. For this particular topic, I have four areas things that I do that helps alleviate the stress of doing it all yourself:
I’ve gone over; scheduling and setting alarms for everything, learning to say, ‘NO’ and being okay with that, and today we’re talking, bargain / negotiating, and living by the deal.
You have to be willing to talk to your spouse or significant other about whatever it’s going to take to make you feel most comfortable with them traveling abroad. It’s very stressful on a marriage to be away from the person that you love most in the entire world and there can definitely be a little paranoia.
Very early on I set up a couple of rules to alleviate my personal fears. Jon calls me when he gets on a plane and when he lands. I’ve seen way too many disaster movies not to have I love you be the last words we speak if anything bad should happen. If he’s not traveling, he calls once a day. It doesn’t need to be long, we’re both insanely busy, but I need to hear his voice once a day and I’m all good.
Holding down the fort is a shit-ton of work and resentment often sets in. But the biggest prevent-er of that is pay attention. If you realize there’s any little thing that can make your life a lot easier, let your significant other know and then you both figure out and work until you can have that thing. A Swiffer Sweeper changed my life… just saying. But it could be having a housekeeper once a week to do but deep down clean and an entire house clean all at the same time or a weekly babysitter to try that Zumba class and get a little kidless shopping done. Maybe, you don’t need anything, just don’t be afraid to talk if there is.
On the flip side, you also have to realize and be empathetic that it’s going to be hard on your spouse as well. So see if there’s something that he or she needs from you. You must be as open to reciprocating their needs as your own are being met. You’re a team, act like it.
You have to be willing to bargain and negotiate any issue you have. It’s a give and take. Here’s a simple example: Jon wanted to stay home and veg when he got home for the weekend – I needed to get the hell out of the house, or I was going to lose my mind. Friday, we stayed in for him, and Saturday’s I got several hours to do whatever I wanted and sometimes we’d go out. We both got what we needed, it was a win/win.
Now the final and most important part of this lesson, living by the deal. This goes beyond your spouse, kids, family, to the external relationships in your life. Although, your spouse or significant other is number one!!!! Here’s the deal, if you agree to something, just do it. Be a person of your word. Life goes so much easier if you’re surrounded with people you trust, be one of those people.
On a side note – don’t be afraid to cut anyone out of your life that didn’t live up to their end of a deal. If they did it once, and you smile and say, “Oh, that’s okay. I understand.” You’re giving them permission to do it again. You don’t have to stop being friends, just stop making deals with them.
That’s it for this week! I’ll be back next Monday with the harshest lesson of them all, It is what it is.
Have a great week!
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