I’ve done the Long Distance Relationship. I survived it of course, and learned and grew from it. I even married the fella in question, but I do not recommend it.
The husband and I spent 3 of our 6 pre-marital, committed-relationship years in different states. We managed, with daily phone calls, the infrequent (and frequently late) birthday card, and many paycheck-depleting plane trips over the 20,000 miles between Tacoma and Chicago.
Once he moved back to the Puget Sound, we decided never to do that, ever ever again.
But I have to say… that kind of training has really been an important piece of who we are as a new family. For one thing, we know what it’s like to really miss the other person. Not for a few hours or a week… but for months on end.
And we eventually learned how important –and how deceptively hard— it is to keep discovering and reminding each other who we are and why we are worth waiting and working for, with actual conversation… not just a laundry list of what we did today and what we might do tomorrow.
A good lesson, as it turns out, that has served us well when we both get busy.
That’s the thing about a double-actor family. When we’re both in shows, we just don’t see each other more than a couple of hours a day, usually when we’re tired and either trying to go to sleep or trying to get out the door in the morning.
Right now, our two shows open on the same night this month, mine in Tacoma and his in Seattle. We’re both entering the time for the longest, hardest rehearsals before the shows open. Per his usual North-End-Theatre routine, the husband is camped out in IndieNic and TheOtherEmilie’s spare bedroom for his tech week (thanks guys!)… when you get out of rehearsal at midnight, driving an hour to get home, then driving back 8 hours later just isn’t worth it.
And I agree. I’m ok with that. We’re ok with that. We know how to make it work.
And shoot… it’s kind of nice to sleep in the middle of the bed and dance around to a loud radio in the morning!
Anyhow, the husband left Wednesday ayem, and I’ll see him verrrry late on Saturday, I think, or maybe it’s Sunday, sometime after I get home from my own 11 pm rehearsal end.
Until then, we’re calling at lunch and dinner breaks, and late late at night to say goodnight, pray together like we do at home, and talk over the workday and rehearsal. It almost feels a little like those Tacoma-to-Chicago days… we may not have much to say, but we know now how important it is to make the effort.
I can almost make it a game… I want to have something interesting to report, so I keep my eyes a little wider, my ears a little more perked to the world around me.
Oh, the irony! Because I was writing this post, I just missed my morning call. Sorry, honeypie! I’ll talk to you at dinner! Dangit.