Sunday, November 8, 2015

NaBloPoMo Day 8: Living in a long distance marriage

Woof with these meaty posts! I really did not plan this month very well. Oh well, here we go.

As I mentioned yesterday, this Christmas will be 6 years that Anthony and I have been together. We met online in 2009 and then met in person when I was home for Christmas that year. Our relationship was serious right from the start so I moved back to Sarnia (my hometown) in July 2010. Since then, we have seen each other mostly on weekends, mostly in Ann Arbor where Anthony lives.

Not living in the same place certainly has it challenges and isn't for everyone.

From the time I moved down until the time I re-started my job, I had terrible anxiety every time I had to leave Ann Arbor and go home. I was under a lot of stress because I wasn't working, and being in A2 distracted me from the fact I was hemorrhaging money. When I went back to work after my leave of absence, things improved. Once I was working Monday to Friday like Anthony, we fell into a nice, still-current routine of me coming in on Fridays after work and staying until either Sunday night or Monday morning.

On rare occasions we see each other outside this schedule. The weekend thing has mostly served us well because we're both busy, independent people. I feel like if we lived in the same city, we probably wouldn't really hang out except on weekends anyway.

Sometimes I even forget that there's anything unusual about our relationship until I mindlessly say, "my husband's house" to somebody and they look at me funny.

For the purposes of this blog post, I'm going to focus on the positive aspects of living apart, since the negative parts are more obvious.

There are definitely advantages to living apart. First, we rarely fight. Second, we talk on the phone most days, sometimes for up to an hour (the first time we ever talked on the phone, we talked for eight...yes, hours). I'm sure dedicating time to talk to each other means we do more talking than many couples who actually live together. We get to have conversations outside of domestic ones like, "Can you pass the butter?" or "You left your socks on the floor again." And speaking of socks on the floor, we don't have much opportunity to be annoyed with each other's quirks. Sure, I get annoyed when Anthony doesn't adequately clean the bathroom after shaving, but I'm not about to waste our precious time together nagging him about it.

I do know there is going to be a period of adjustment when we do finally live together. Anthony has never really lived with a significant other, and I haven't since 2008. It's inevitable that we will have a few bumps along the road, but I also think we will be in a unique position because we will be glad  that we FINALLY live together. Arguing about petty stuff will probably seem silly in that respect.

Overall, I actually feel pretty fortunate that Anthony and I live as close together as we do. I try to stay cognizant of the fact that there are couples who don't get to see each other on weekends, who don't live in the same time zone or even the same continent. In the grand scheme of things, Anthony and I have it pretty good for being in a long distance relationship. I never in the world imagined I'd be in this situation in life but then again, I never imagined having a relationship as amazing as mine and Anthony's. My gratefulness for knowing him always, always trumps my sadness that we don't live in the same city.

Sexy toasters, just 'cause.

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