It’s one thing to be overly-attached to your new baby, as I discussed previously, but to your husband? Tonight is the first night that my husband and I will have spent apart while being on the same continent, and I am having serious separation anxiety.
As recounted in one of my earliest posts, my husband was the first person I met when I stepped foot in South Africa. From the day he picked me up at the airport, we spent almost all of our time together for the duration of my fellowship – we worked together, lived together, traveled together, and socialized together. Whenever I went back to South Africa, I stayed with my now-husband and went everywhere with him because I did not have my own car, job, friends, or sufficient familiarity with the area. When he finally immigrated to the U.S., our roles were reversed and my husband adopted my friends, church, hobbies, and activities. Because we have similar interests and priorities, and because we honestly enjoy each other’s company, we still do almost everything together when I am not at work.
It may sound sappy or naïve, but I really never get tired of spending time with my husband (although it might have happened if the government shutdown had continued for another week or two!). He is my best friend; he not only accepts, but celebrates, me for who I am, bad habits and all. He is the ying to my yang; we have complementary skills and needs and constantly express our mutual appreciation. Spending so much time together means we know each other better than we know ourselves. Of course, we can drive each other crazy at times, but that’s fun, too, because we never really get angry and just fall in love again when we get through the issue.
Today, my son and I are going to Miami for four days, but my husband is staying home. I don’t know who he is going to miss more – me or our son. Of course, my husband spends even more of his time with our son than with me, since he watches the baby while I am at work and then we are all together as soon as I get home. Occasionally, I will take the baby on an errand or an outing to give my husband a break, but usually, he doesn’t want or need a break from our son.
All I know is that I am going to miss my husband terribly (even though I am very excited to see my friends in Miami). I have been losing sleep all week worrying about how I will manage the stroller and luggage at the airport, a potential poop explosion en route, and any injuries the baby may incur while we’re gone (my husband is the level-headed one in times of crisis). Most of all, I will miss having someone to share our son’s moments with (no one else can quite appreciate the well-timed gas, the funny expression upon trying a new food, or the persistence in figuring out how something works). I am even worried our son may take his first steps while we are away (he is so close!); I really want us to be together as a family for that milestone.
Without my husband, our son and I are just two-third of a three-legged stool. Fortunately, we can lean on my friends in Miami and we will be reunited as a family in a few days. I cannot even imagine how single moms, and those whose husbands are absent for work and other obligations, manage. Hopefully, this weekend will make me, my husband, and our son stronger as individuals and as a family unit. I might even learn something about myself as a mother when parenting sans partner. This time apart will likely give us all a chance to appreciate one another even more. If not, the baby and I are off to a family reunion in Connecticut next weekend, so …