Confessions of a Traveler’s Wife

I often tell myself I can’t do it when Rusty is away. I act like I can’t possibly manage bath time, dinner time, bed time, or any other time of day while the husband is out of town. I freak out, lose my patience, let the house blow up to a new level of mess, and generally cry a lot. It’s a real circus when Rusty is gone. This is my confession of a traveler’s wife. 

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I am a really good mom. I’m not just saying that to toot my own horn, I was born to be a mom. Most of us moms are really good moms if we give ourselves any credit. I study and practice the skill of motherhood. I run experiments to see what does and does not work for my kids and for my family. I plan and schedule and problem solve. Like most moms, I am constantly honing the skills of motherhood. So what? All of that goes out the window when my husband leaves town?

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My husband’s most recent time out of  town was a combine trip, work and paintball. The trip lasted 10 days, two weekends and the week in-between. Of course when he told me I panicked, I complained, I might have said a few negative things about paintball (horrible wife, I know). I had visions of how horrible 10 days alone with my kids is going to go. Any other wives have husbands who travel often? Do you know the feelings? I mean, I would have to put them to bed aaaand get up with them for breakfast. How horrible! I eventually succumbed to the dark cloud that is paintball, put the trip in our family calendar, and waited for the time to come. But this time it was different.

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I dropped Rusty off at Toronto Pearson Airport and as the door closed behind him something just clicked, I am a good and capable mom. I spend everyday of my life mom-ing. I’ve totally got this. I don’t need to stand at my kitchen sink crying because there are just so many dishes and the kids are fighting, I know how to deal with that. And I don’t need to freak out because I am in charge of bedtime and wake up, the kids don’t even wake up until 7:30, sometimes 8. I’m just being ridiculous. I can do this.

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So while Rusty was gone, the kids and I went out for food, went out of ice cream, had playdates, went to church, baked cookies, cleaned the toy rooms a few times, read books, kept up with the kitchen, saw The Jungle Book, and played outside. Whoa! I can’t believe I did all of that alone. Oh wait, yes I can, I do it all the time.

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So why do I freak out when Rusty leaves town? It might be because I see plastered all over faceboook how it is impossible to be a mother without coffee in the morning and wine at night. It might be because I am told over and over again to feel mom guilt and that every mom does everything wrong.  I don’t know, but I am done acting like taking care of my kids is just too much work. Yes, I need my husband, yes, I appreciate all of the work my husband does around the house even after a long day at a desk, but I can certainly survive 10 days alone. I can do it.

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Clear eyes, full hearts, can’t lose.

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Jessica

Jessica is a follower of Jesus, a wife, and a mommy. A family life expert who writes about her personal life, parenting adventures, and everything in-between.

6 Comments

  1. I am so glad you did this post. I too am tired of some of the excuses that I see some mom’s make. We are made to be maternal and although our husbands help with the parenting its still alot different than what we know we are capable of. We don’t need coffee or wine to survive or cope with being mothers. Sometimes I feel like its a cop out and I am also guilty from time to time using it as an excuse. Then I remember I did this on my own as a single mother for years and I do it now with hubby working nights. At the end of the day we are responsible for what we do and don’t do and how we deal with things. This was an amazing reminder that we can do it.

  2. It’s amazing what we tell ourselves we are and aren’t capable of, yet we serve a mighty God who says we can do ALL things through Him! This reminder was spot on friend. Thank you so much for sharing!

  3. This is so good. Thanks for the share. I actually enjoy being alone with my kids. It changes the routine of our days and nights and I crave change. When my husband is away he can recharge and really enjoy coming home to us. I’m so happy you have realized your able to do it alone. Much love to you and your family.

  4. I love the change in mindset you made for yourself and it’s amazing to hear your feeling of accomplishment in motherhood! Some moms do feel incapable and I hope this can be a sign of hope for them!

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