Eben and I never wanted to be the family that does stints apart due to work. It sucks. We like spending time together. But money is a necessity, and for us to be able to live the way we do, we need to keep our bank account at a “comfortable for us” state.
Right now, since this boutique hotel business is slow going, our most viable option for an income is for him to continue doing sewing jobs when there are sewing jobs to be done. Meaning the time apart has to be done. It’s not a pattern we want to keep on repeating. But for now, it’s how it is and we’re ok with that.
But he comes home this Friday!!!! (Insert crazy happy dance!)
We’ve done 3 of these 1-2 month stints in the last year. And as this one is nearing its end I’ve realized that I went through 3 very different phases of Eben being away. Check this out.
First Time Away
Last year when Eben went away we had just moved into our house in Todos Santos. Who remembers the disaster state it was in!? We had so many projects that could be done. And I had such a desire to do them.
I wanted to make this house feel like a comfortable home. I was painting walls, scrubbing floor tiles, getting furniture and decorations, and I had become a Pinterest home decorating queen. My glue gun and I were best of friends!
I was super busy. Super motivated. And super excited to show Eben all that I had accomplished.
The Second Time Away
At this point, the housework was mostly done, so I turned the work inward and started working on me. We should all strive at being the best versions of ourselves, and to be continuously learning.
I was getting stacks of inspirational books at the library. I was filling my time with reading, listening to podcasts, audiobooks, meditation, gratitude journaling, and online mentoring with Jay Shetty.
I was working on being a better mom, better wife, and simply a better me. I was seeking out my “why”, my motivations, and inspires me.
I’m still searching btw, just currently in a less dedicated manner. Which brings me to…
The Third Time Away
This time has felt more like “survival”. Or laziness. Or both.
Eben and I talk daily, throughout the day. And we noticed that this time around I have been saying a lot more often than “I am tired”. I haven’t been sleeping well. It’s been a combination of outside noise, sleepwalking/talking kids, and night-time restlessness. This has left me waking up at my normal time but feeling way drained, already. Whereas in “Second Time Eben was away” I was getting up an hour before the girls, to workout before they left for school!
I’ve been keeping up with being a good, involved, and attentive mom (at least I think I have), keeping my kids fed with healthy meals, and the house reasonably clean. (The Roomba has helped me do a lot of the cleaning!) I have been keeping the girls busy and happy. We do activities. We play. I keep them involved. But that’s when I’m on “mom time”. “Me Time” has been lazier.
I’ve continued to work out daily, but a lot of that is so that I don’t feel like I’ve done nothing all day. Outside of working out, my “me” time (ie nap time and when the girls are in bed for the night) has involved me sitting in my pj’s catching up on Grey’s Anatomy and other mind-numbing tv shows.
I’ve had moments where I’ve felt guilty that I wasn’t doing more. But then I’d also remember that moming isn’t easy, and I was doing that well, so let me sit and watch tv on my time. Guilt-free.
Finding My Sanity
It seems that every time Eben was away I found a different way to keep sane. Some stages were productive. Some were less so. But all kept me mentally happy and able to keep on going as a solo mom until his return. He’s my best friend and he’s away, and spending some days with only children to converse with can be hard, but I found my ways to keep it together. If it works, it works.
Now that his return date is in sight, I feel like my days of binge-watching tv sitting in my undies are numbered, and I am totally ok with that. Soon I’ll have evenings cuddled up on the couch with my hottie, ready to “Netflix and Chill”.
Did I ever feel old when I had to google what the term Netflix and Chill means! HaHaHa! We don’t have Netflix, but we can Watch Movies and Chill.