Tuesday, February 4, 2014

In Which Long Distance Relationships Are Not Fun

I'm throwing myself a bit of a pity party over here at the moment-- Jer and I went on our very first date around this time of year a rather appallingly long time ago, and I'm getting all sentimental and missing him bunches.

It's been nineteen months now since Jer and I have been living in different states while he attends Army PA school, and I have to say I don't think things have gotten any easier.  There are times I can lose myself in the daily routine of taking care of the kids and the house, and then there are other times  I miss him so much I can hardly breathe.  

It's not like he's deployed-- we talk on the phone literally every day, and I get to see him once every
three or four months.  He's not in harm's way, and with only eleven more months to go we're well past the midpoint of our separation now and I know that in less than a year he'll be home.  But that doesn't change how difficult this whole long-distance marriage thing is.  I don't say that because I'm worried about our marriage falling apart or anything, because after weathering all the ridiculously dramatic situations we've been through in the past ten years I'm pretty sure that nothing short of a nuclear holocaust could give us much trouble in that department.

It's more that I have to remind myself two or three times a month (or day, depending on how things are going) that as a responsible adult and parent I cannot just stuff the kids in the car, drive down to California and announce that, to heck with all the really legitimate reasons why we can't be down there with him, we're moving in.

Of course I can't actually do that, because the main reason we're not down there is that Connor doesn't have a heat release mechanism and it gets to 95 degrees there in the summer, making living there an Extremely Poor Parenting Decision.  Also Jer is living in someone else's house and I doubt they'd be okay with three more people moving into their spare bedroom.  But I daydream about it a lot.

I've developed all sorts of weird little coping mechanisms to make it feel like Jer's here.  I keep a toothbrush in the bathroom for him and a pair of his shoes in the closet by the door.  I've been careful not to take over his side of the closet even though my side is overflowing right now.  I still only sleep on one side of the bed.  Sometimes after a really hard day, I'm a bit embarrassed to admit, I even pile up pillows behind my back and pretend he's sleeping next to me.

I'm so, so proud of him for doing what he's doing, and in the grand scheme of things two-and-a-half years isn't all that long.  I guess one of the disadvantages of being utterly, completely head-over-heels for the man I married is that separations like this are always going to be pretty tough.  I'm really looking forward to the day he's home for good (or at least for a good while-- he is in the military, after all) and in the meantime I'll keep on keeping on.  That's life!

But yeah, it's hard right now.


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