Many variables will affect your family time together, but one thing is guaranteed. You have to prepare yourself to be alone at times. There are deployments, field exercises, schools, duty times... the list goes on and on.
Everyone has different ways of dealing with these separations. For me, the why determines how I cope. Is it a short duty span, maybe 24 hours? Is it longer field time or perhaps a few months away at a school? Or is it a year and more, fearing for his safety while he's deployed? Each one is different.
The shorter spans are much easier to handle. In fact, they can even be fun if you let them! When the Hubs is away for a week or less, I try to use the time as an opportunity. Keeping myself busy not only speeds the time along, but I can do things I normally wouldn't when the Hubs is home.
This is one of my 'away' rituals. Takeout Chinese (which the Hubs refuses to eat when home), and some seriously 'girlie' movies. Yep, I'm not ashamed, that's Taylor Launter. Action movie or not, this is still a chick flick. I also rented the Smurfs movie. Don't judge me!
When I think of the Hubs being gone for those shorter time periods, I think of Chinese and girl movies. Yes, I miss him. Yes, I wish he was here. But missing him and wishing he was here isn't going to change the facts: he's still away. He can't call in sick. He can't just take the day off. Spouses either find ways to cope or they slowly go a bit wonky. Obviously, judging from my movie taste, I went a bit wonky before I discovered these coping skills.
I have a whole list of 'away' rituals. Sometimes I have pajama Mondays. Or Tuesdays or Wednesdays, or whatever day he's not here. I love just hanging out in my pjs with my fluffy socks on and curling up with a good book. On other days, I score a lunch out with my girl pals. Maybe I cook seafood for dinner, since the Hubs would veto that on a normal day. Or I rack up the miles hiking with my friend Abby (You can check out her hiking blog here, she's amazing!)
Now, thanks to Abby, I have a new outlet... blogging! Hahaha.
While it's never fun to be apart, you do the best you can. Longer separations require different things, which I'm sure I'll ramble on about eventually. For now though, I'm happy with the Smurfs and Taylor Launter.
Do you have 'away' rituals? What are the ones you like best? You don't need to be military to have them, other people travel for business too. Maybe you're the one who's gone, how do you deal with leaving your family behind?
Don't be shy! Inquiring minds want to know :)