web analytics

commuter marriage

home, house, home is where the heart is, moving, selling, buying

Home, photos, memories, relocating, moving, buying property, selling property, family, new life

Home is More than Where You Live

Relocating~ The past few days were spent packing up our home; the house we’ve lived in since Bella was 5 months old. She is 7 years old and 4 months old. This is the house where I truly came into my mommy skin. It is where Bella crawled underneath the Christmas tree and stared up at the lights in complete awe. This is where we all had a lot of our firsts. It is the home where the Big Guy and I finally felt ‘home’. The home that Gabi was conceived in and brought home to and greeted by kisses and squeals of joy by her big sister. It will no longer be ours. It was the first home we lived in as a family. Soon, it will be where memories are made for another family.

I’ve been so caught up in moving forward & surviving the past 3 years of upheaval that I never let myself grieve for the loss of our home. Our. Home! The home where the Big Guy and I first heard the words muttered “ Mama & Dada” uttered from tiny mouths. The home where both of our daughters celebrated their first 4 birthdays will no longer feel the electric energy of both sides of the family gathering in celebration and love of our girls or my husband pouring every ounce of Daddy love into making the girls the birthday cake of their heart’s desire. My dad will never play his guitar and sing to my girls in that house. There will be no more annual Thanksgiving Rock Band marathons after turkey in our media room in that house. There will never be another Fourth of July spent in our back yard with all of our friends and family playing corn hole and having spontaneous water fights. I will miss all of that.

As I packed the sum of our life until now, I’d come across a binky, stuffy or some other newborn toy that I know we’ll never need again & my heart sunk a little thinking of the children I raised in this house and the one that I lost, who I will never see smiling up at me from the jumper in the bedroom door jam. The baby who I will never walk around our neighborhood at dusk, as the streets were flooded with our neighbors walking off the day. Sitting on the back deck sipping coffee with the man of my dreams, listening to the morning birds in the early sun as the girls sleepily found their way into our laps. Seeing the yard where the sign stood welcoming Gabi home reminded me of how I felt that day. The happiness and joy that I felt through my exhaustion at my two beautiful, perfect daughters. The neighborhood where both girls celebrated their first Halloweens dressed as the cutest pumpkins I have ever seen. The house where my girls made their first friends had first play dates and learned the value of a good friend. The back deck where the Big Guy placed a corsage on Bella’s wrist at the tender age of three for her first Daddy and Daughter dance just so he could set the standard of respect and love that our girls would demand from all men henceforth.

home, home sweet home, leaving home, growing up, babies, pregnancy, motherhood, life, marriage, the truth about motherhood, relocating, moving, buying property, selling property, family, new life

Home is All the Love that Fills a House

This home was filled with the laughter of the people we love so much, tears of joy and pain as we endured hurts and embraced firsts. The home where I had a 1 year old Bella toddle over to her Daddy and hand the Big Guy a card and a small box which held inside of it one of the greatest gifts I could give him, the announcement of our second pregnancy. Our home where the Big Guy got down on one knee and proposed to me, 11 years after our wedding just because I never got the down on one knee proposal of my dreams the first time. This is why he IS the man of my dreams. In our home, this is where the Big Guy encouraged me to pursue my dreams of becoming a writer and start this blog.  He gave me the support to give it my all and the love to continue on even when I felt no one else was listening. He was my first ‘fan’, he is still my biggest fan and that means something to me.

This home is where the four of us became a family and learned the meaning of the bond two people share once they have children together. It is the house where I learned that my heart could walk around freely outside of my body and I could survive. It’s where I realized that marrying your soul mate means someone to share everything with and to bring you unfathomable joy but it also means that you have more to lose than anyone else. It’s where we learned that when you have a second child, your love and attention does not split; your heart and love double, at the very least. It’s the house where I learned that unconditional love is not only possible, it is by far my greatest privilege to be able to give it to these other three people and my honor to receive it from them. I am blessed beyond measure and thankful to have them to love, every single day of my life. A place cannot contain heart bursting unconditional love, heartbreaking memories and the feeling of really belonging, these all reside in your heart and that goes with you wherever you go.

When I pull away from our home that final last time later this week, I know I will cry for all the growing we did there; all the experiences we had together; gummy smiles and realizing our family was growing, Sunday’s when daddy had to leave, teaching the girls to ride their bikes and watching as they were born, then watching them grow from newborn, to toddler, preschooler and the first day of school. The beginnings of the growing up and letting go of the most important things in my life all started here. I’d like to take it all and put it in my mind on an endless loop, like a memory hoarder but then there would never be room for new experiences. I look forward to the next chapter of our lives together. I am excited and elated knowing that we will be in a home together, just the four of us again, going to bed and waking up and everyone being in the same house. I will cry when I say goodbye to the only home the four of us have ever known but I will be thankful for living the experience. Home is where your heart is even when your belongs are long gone.

home, house, home is where the heart is, moving, selling, buying

Home is Where Your Heart Is

0 FacebookTwitterPinterestLinkedinStumbleuponEmail

If you have landed here tonight looking for whimsy, snark, or a mommy truism; you may want to stop reading. No, tonight is a post for me. Sometimes you just need a post where  you can get it all out of your system; where you can rage, wallow, and come out the other end a stronger, better person for surviving. That’s what this post is going to be. This is me trying not to drown. If you are a woman and you’ve ever felt swelled up, rolled, and pinched into the corner that is your life and the gravity of reality has hit you all at once like a ton of bricks, this may be a post you can relate to. If not, I am happy for you.You are dismissed…

Today, I woke up after 10 full hours of sleep. Probably the most peaceful rest I’ve had in months, truly. My sleep is about as effective and complete as my 3 year old cleaning her room.Some things may get moved around, she goes through the motions, but in the end, the effort was useless.The room is NEVER any cleaner,but there is a perceived sense of “cleaned”..but not really. Every night, I more or less pass out from exhaustion than drift off into peaceful slumber.When I do go to sleep, its that Mommy one eye open, both ears functioning like dogs, and I wake if the dog farts in another room..across the house. It’s just the way I’m built. Probably much like you. But last night was different,last night..I relaxed before bed time ( like I did before kids), I watched a movie, and a let myself “fall” into sleep. It was glorious. I always took that for granted but it really is a wonderful thing to experience. But then I woke up.

Funny thing about a full night of restful sleep.It gives your mind time to rest, relax, repair itself and, heaven forbid, in my case, think clearly.  I woke up this morning and the fog had lifted off my brain.Anyone who’s followed me for any length of time, knows my story. Quick recap; The Big Guy lives in another state Sunday through Friday ( due to work location)for the past 11 months. We (myself and my two littles) live here ( due to several external factors). He comes home on Friday nights ( this is my Christmas each and every week). It is hard. Really, really hard…on all of us.But we’ve been doing it for so long that I am on autopilot most days.Basically, living for the next Friday, the month, the year when this horrible living arrangement is over.Always, looking toward the end in sight.Worst of all; I love my husband.I honestly, truly; really love my husband and more than that I like him.

But this morning, with the fog dissipated and my brain functioning at full capacity, all of the sudden reality slapped me right across the face with the force of  freight train and I could no longer restrain myself from facing reality. I had to get it out.I tried to hold it in. After all,the Big Guy is in this same situation and I try not to let on how hard this is for me. I admit to having a mini meltdown every 3 months or so, but this was like nothing I’ve ever felt. It was overwhelming, raw pain. It was like losing someone, or something and then I realized..I am. We are being robbed of our life together. It’s NOT fair.

I guess I should tell you the whole story of this morning.I woke up fine and then, I realized it was Sunday ( which means the Big Guy is leaving..again) which normally leaves me with a knot in the pit of my stomach  but today it was like somebody stabbed me in the chest. At that very moment, I was making breakfast for the girls who have decided that they are going to refuse me everything I offer them, at least three times. And that is what cracked me. I started to tear up, I couldn’t eat because I couldn’t swallow anything with that giant lump in my throat and I walked away so the girls wouldn’t see. My emotions were overwhelming me.I was drowning.

Then lunch rolled around, I served the girls lunch..same thing.They didn’t like what it was, why did I give them this;I should know better; and they both refused again. To which, the weight was too much and I broke. I started to cry this time, part anger; part despair; part frustration. Then I went to the bathroom and I cried for what seemed like forever but I think it was more like 45 minutes.Every time, I thought I was done I’d remember one more piece of shit that was piled on my plate. Finally, I pulled it together enough to come out of the bathroom.The Big Guy was concerned and checking on me, I think he thought I was trying to escape down the toilet bowl. I felt as though I had some catharsis, crying my heart out..there in my desperately needing to be cleaned bathroom. Then I came out.

He had sent the girls to their rooms and the Big Guy was helping me take down the Christmas tree in silence and then I opened my mouth to speak. My heart was heavy, so heavy that I felt as though trying to force the words out of my mouth might choke me to death but I had to do it. He stood there in silence and listened as I fought for my life. I told him how I have no one to talk to and I’m all alone. I told him how I’ve been so busy trying to be strong for everyone else that I’ve neglected to deal with my own feelings. I opened up about how hard this is on me and the girls. How they are acting out in anger to the situation.They are hurt, they are confused. I explained how I feel like a failure as a mother because I am so tired, and so busy and always patching just to get by instead of nurturing because it’s all I can do to get by from one day to the next. I told him how I am overwhelmed by never having enough money because we are living in separate places, leading separate lives. I told home how much that bothers me. I told him how I feel like a failure at my dreams because its just one more thing that I don’t have time for. I feel like I am not utilizing my opportunities in a way I am supposed to. I see my friends, my age, achieving their goals, managing their families, making head way on their dreams…I feel like I am banging my head on a wall..a brick wall…falling short in every single category. On top of all that, the thing that I think actually made the weight too much to bear, the plans we had to be together this summer has been put on hold. We had a place to stay but now that choice is no longer an option (one of the reasons I hate putting my happiness in the hands of others). So now, the end in sight that has kept me going all these months..is gone. This was too much today. This broke me..but only for a day.

I’ve got it all off my chest,I cried, I screamed, I raged and now,I am moving on. Just one more thing I feel like a failure at, I am always positive. I am a half full type of girl. I always believe that everything is possible through hard work and determination and I truly believe that. I do, with all my heart, but my problem is I haven’t been acknowledging the situation. I’ve been so busy getting through it that I’ve not been dealing with it. This is me, feeling sorry for myself…for 24 hours, acknowledging, admitting that it is HARD, sucking it up and moving on. I will not be defeated. This situation has not broken me, as I first thought; it has bent me, it has rattled me and I will move forward stronger with an ever greater determination. I make my own success and happiness; that is what I am focusing on. I will tread water until I regain my strength to swim, but I will not drown.

Have you ever felt like you were overwhelmed in your life? In motherhood? How do you deal with it? What do you do to get over the hurdles of motherhood and life?

0 FacebookTwitterPinterestLinkedinStumbleuponEmail

The last few days, life has been weighing on me like a ton of bricks. I’ve been somewhat of an emotional wreck.I’m feeling as if I am falling short..in every avenue.

I have become accustomed to the weight of the world pushing down on my shoulders like a spring about to be sprung at anytime. This I am used to but  kept telling myself..”I” can do this. It’s only  for a few more months. I can hold it together.If the Big Guy can go away to support his family, leave his home and his children..I can do this. I am afforded the luxury of staying in my own home with our little family by my side. Sure the silence after they go to bed is deafening and sometimes heartbreaking, but it is the least I can do.I owe it to ‘Us’ to be able to do this.Of course, I have my occasional breakdowns and find myself having a nice long, ugly cry over some seemingly innocuous incident. But then I move on and I am free of the pressure for a little while.

But I forgot about one vital piece of information…them. More important than can I do this, can they do this.

Bella had a terrible time last year when this all began.She had to leave her preschool with all her friends, her teacher, her life.Then when the Big Guy had to leave this past spring again, she was a wreck.He had to leave the day before her 5th birthday. An angry, displaced, overwhelmed little basket of nerves. I understood. I gave her some time and space. I was there with hugs and consolation. I was there overflowing with understanding and love.Always standing by with love. I never want them to feel a lack of love because of the lack of people around to give it. It broke my heart to watch her have to go through this at such a young age. To feel such misery and discombobulation is awful for anyone to experience. Eventually, the anger subsided. She grew up..too much and too fast because she was forced to accept the situation and learn to live with it.This breaks my heart to know that she has lost some of her innocence about the world because of money. I hate to see my children want for anything, especially when it is their Daddy, whom they really do hang the moon on.

There was one person who was silent through it all, my Gabs. Gabs is 3 and this situation with the Big Guy having to be gone, for work, has been going on since right around the time she turned 2.She was just a baby, really. So, I never considered how it would affect her. I don’t think I even put her into the equation because she was so small. However now, she is 3 and a half and she has found her voice.She notices everything and she has an opinion.The last 8 months have consisted of me being here with my girls trying to figure it all out, the Big Guy being gone, on his own,alone.It’s been Christmas Fridays and funeral Sunday nights left standing on the stoop, while watching  through tear filled eyes as my girls run down the road waving bye to their Daddy;screaming “I love you” at the top of their lungs. It’s been Sunday nights filled with meltdowns of little girls missing their Daddy. Its been week nights of soothing little broken hearts calling out for their Daddy. It’s been hard all the way around. Lately, Gabs has been acting out.She cries for her Daddy almost nightly and she tells me on a regular basis that she hates me and quite frequently can be heard asking “You hate me, don’t you?” I know that she doesn’t hate me but lately her question has been cutting like a knife through my soul. She wants her Daddy and I am beginning to wonder if she doesn’t think I am punishing her by not being together. Does she think I have control of this situation? In her little mind, does she think I have willingly chosen to keep us all apart?

It’s almost too much for my heart to bear.The rock and the hard place that I am nestled between is this; Bella is finally comfortable in school ( after being yanked out of her school in Virginia last year) and has finally made friends after the alienation episode at the beginning of this semester. I feel like I owe it to her to make life as normal as possible. After all , she is the child and I am her parent so I need to sacrifice to do what is best for her. That has been the plan since we first pulled this nasty trick on her. The Big Guy and I agreed to sacrifice so that the kids could remain in  their home, their city, until the end of the school year..to give them security and stability. It’s been incredibly difficult but it seemed to be what was best.

Now,little Gabs is begging me to move us to be with the Big Guy; crying nightly, angry, confused, melancholy and still so small. What do I do? How do I choose? One scenario I pull Bella out, once again, and she has to start over..yet again. That doesn’t seem fair. But then on the other hand, Gabs only wants to be with her father.Its such a simple request and a luxury that all children ,with two happily married people,should be afforded.But even this simple request, I can’t provide for the little people that I love more than life itself.This weighs heavily on my soul.Am I making the right choice? How can I choose one of my children’s happiness over the other? What are going to be the ramifications of these choices we are making today for our children down the line?Am I damaging my little ones?

So, here I sit alone in the quiet reevaluating every decision that I have made since the beginning of this entire situation.The last 24 hours have been a roller coaster of emotions. It started with goodbye on a Sunday night, the girls started crying and they wore down the armor around my heart.And I haven’t been able to regain my strength and stability, the weight of their little breaking hearts has knocked me off of my feet.Today has been a succession of crying over movies, tv shows, Gabs telling me that she hates me, and a bedtime reading of Love You Forever. I feel like a fragile ball of exposed nerves  roaming free in the world. I am exhausted from the gravity of this whole ordeal. For now, I’ll pull my armor back on and regain my balance, for my girls. But I have to do some very serious soul searching. We think we are giving our children everything they could hope for but in the end, it boils down to what everything is to our children. For my girls, everything is a good night hug from their Daddy. It is priceless. How do I choose who deserves to be happiest? How do I tell one that their needs has to be put aside for the others?

0 FacebookTwitterPinterestLinkedinStumbleuponEmail

Yesterday was Sunday.Sunday’s are bittersweet around here. They are simultaneously filled with big breakfasts, mass, lazy days of Halloween decorating, cuddling, mostly just being together. Unfortunately, for us, it is also always filled with certain goodbyes and impending sadness.
As most of you know, the Big Guy has been working out of state a lot of the time. This leaves me an overworked, stressed, spread much to thin Mommy.The girls are hyper emotional, dealing with some issues of abandonment, missing their Daddy, and testing my boundaries. The Big Guy is working his ass off,lonely and missing his family.It’s a pretty raw deal all the way around but we make the sacrifice, well, because we have to. It’s not ideal but it’s what needs to be done..right now.

The good great fantastic news blessing is that he has finally gotten a permanent position with a great company. Which means soon we will all be in the same zip code.Obviously, that is AWESOME! But in the interim, until spring when we can put the house on the market, after the Nutcracker has been performed, after kindergarten graduation, we have to live for our weekends together because its all we have. We spend our days marking time until the next time we can all be together. It’s quite pathetic all the way around. Don’t get me wrong, we have been doing this for about 8 months and we have established a groove. About once about every 3 months, I have a major emotional breakdown. You know, things get too overwhelming and I just can’t go on any longer alone. I make it to the weekend and then he says something like, “I need you to move with me now …so you can work and I can watch the kids at night.” Normally, that would be no big deal but for some reason under these circumstances they instigated a complete breakdown. First, I felt insulted that he didn’t think I was working, then there was the whole he only wants us with him so that I can work, then I was broken by the fact that I am missing him terribly..in my heart, in my arms, in my bed and he is missing…my revenue? Then he told me, that he has been telling me for weeks that he misses us and wants us to be together. I’ve been stuck on autopilot trying to survive this situation. I am trying to do what is best for the girls, for our family…not what is necessarily good for me. Of course being together would be better for me. I could share the parenting, share the load, share my life but in my mind it’s not a feasible option, so why entertain it? But he said that he felt that him missing us was not enough of a catalyst for me, so he figured since I am so concerned with our finances that he would coerce me to relocate early by threatening financial ruin.

Of course, I had a good long cry on a Sunday morning. You know of the cathartic, sobbing, hyperventilating, can’t breathe, very ugly, body shaking variety and all he could do was hold me. But it was nice to have him here to hold me. We both regrouped and moved on. We went shopping, had lunch, blanketed the neighborhood as a family taking our Bella to sell her candy bars for school, visiting with all the neighbors, Then we came home and put up our giant blow up witch in the yard  and pretended to be like every other family on the block. But it was still Sunday. There is no denying when its ourSundays, the sadness is palpable and becomes almost smothering around 5:30 pm. We can pretend we are normal until then.

The Big Guy has been trying to stick around until after the girls are asleep, to help me out with bedtime /Missing Daddy meltdowns.God bless him. Of course, last night Bella went right to sleep after only a brief tantrum. But Gabs, oh my Gabs, she was nodding off in my lap as the Big Guy kissed us goodbye. We were both a little emotional because we have had to say more goodbyes in the last 8 months than most married couples do in a lifetime together. Right as he walked out the door, Gabs lifted her head and did a demonstration of my breakdown that morning.Wailing  and screaming. ” Me miss my Daddy! Me want my Daddy!” After about 30 minutes,I finally calmed her down. Of course, we had 3 repeat performances last night..each time she stirred from her slumber. I tried to soothe her each time, but when a baby wants Daddy..a Mommy is a poor substitute. I just kept feeling that horrible lump in my throat( that I know so well) and a pain in my heart…my poor breaking Mommy heart!

0 FacebookTwitterPinterestLinkedinStumbleuponEmail

Tonight, when the big guy had to leave us bound back for his hole (his work apartment) Bella and Gabs followed him out to his car and jumped inside to “inspect” it. I was on the stoop, as always, watching on. I refuse to walk out to the car to say goodbye, it just makes it harder.

Bella, walks back and says,” I just needed to smell the car!”
Bella: “To get me through..”
Me: “What do you mean?”( I seriously wasn’t sure where she was going with this)
Bella: “To get me through without crying!”

And with that, I took a deep breath and so did the big guy, and we both held back our own tears at our little girl’s stiff upper lip mentality and little breaking heart on the inside. What an awful lesson for someone who is barely 5 years old to have to learn, little lone know and deal with. This whole economy and living apart during the week situation is for the birds. But on a positive note, the big guy has an interview for a permanent job. It will eventually require a move if he gets the job but at least it will allow us all be together again like a family and we will finally be able to say goodbye to all of these goodbyes. For now, we pray and hope for the best.

0 FacebookTwitterPinterestLinkedinStumbleuponEmail
what is commuter marriage, commuter marriage, living apart, the toll of work travel on a marriage, married and single, single parenting

You’ve all seen me write about it but maybe you’re wondering what is Commuter Marriage?  As I stand on the front stoop watching my husband pull away for the 17th Sunday, bound for his hole he calls an apartment in Iowa, my throat closes up and I feel like I will be swallowed completely by the huge lump in my esophagus and my eyes burn and sting as they get a little watery.

I watch my girls run down the sidewalk waving and screaming , “Bye Daddy, I love you!” and my heart is breaking into a thousand pieces inside. Every week it stings my very core; every single time. Sometimes worse than others, but always. I really loathe all this single mothering that I’ve been doing lately but more than that I hate that we are all getting used to it, comfortable even.

What is commuter marriage? It’s hard on the family.

The girls are getting used to not having Daddy around, and I am getting used to handling things on my own, and sometimes when he’s here, I think he feel’s like he is out of place in his own home. That is what really bothers me. Isn’t this how people drift apart? Isn’t this how families fall apart? I love my husband, and he loves me but if you get used to not having someone around, pretty soon won’t you stop missing one another?

When your husband travels for work, it’s not consistent and it’s random and you learn to deal with it by looking forward to the next time he returns. But when your husband has a residence in a whole other state for a job because his office is there and you KNOW he will be gone for at least 4 of the days of the week, it’s a little harder to swallow.

There is no room for superfluous personal days or no chance of no travel because every week you know, come Sunday afternoon..he’s pulling away and you are left behind on that damn stoop and he’s left watching you grow smaller and smaller in the rearview mirror.

I thought being married meant someone to share my life with. Recently, I feel more like I am a kept woman; a lonely one at that. I have someone to pay the bills. We’re getting to the point where we are forgetting to tell each other the little things that happen in our day to day and that scares me. Pretty soon we won’t know each other. I can deal with geographic distance but not emotional distance. I mean, I never thought I’d be married and alone.

What is Commuter Marriage? It’s being married but alone.

What do I do? Do I tell him to quit and come home because I need my friend, my partner, my husband? Or do I just keep going on ignoring the fact that this is really hard and slowly becoming impossible? Some days, I am okay with it. Other days, I can hardly bear it.I am lonely and I miss our relationship. The day to day, seeing each other, talking about nothing, sharing laughs and feelings, stolen glances and touches. Now, everything is forced into a weekends time and it’s not enough.

I feel like such an ungrateful asshole. I know I should be filled with gratitude that he has a job at all in this economy but it’s extremely hard when you’ve spent every day of the past 13 years with this man and suddenly you are living separate lives. I know he is just as lonely there but some days I feel overwhelmed with all the responsibility of holding it all together. Some days, it is just too much.But what do you do when you have bills to pay and kids to feed, mortgages, groceries, and school loans? You suck it up, you be a grown-up, you get out of the fetal position, stop crying and stand on that damn stoop and wave goodbye and hope its not for the last time. Commuter marriage is not for the weak.

What is commuter marriage?

It’s survival and groceries and mortgages. It’s not being homeless. It’s saying goodbye more often than you ever dreamed. Have you or would you ever be in a commuter marriage and make it work?

0 FacebookTwitterPinterestLinkedinStumbleuponEmail

This website uses cookies to improve your experience. We'll assume you're ok with this, but you can opt-out if you wish. Accept Read More