You know you are truly married when it’s hard to say ‘I miss you.’
The husband has been away for three days at a scam fest (sorry, ad fest) and will be back tonight, so I write this in a hurry. Through what seems to be an act of some divine pact betwen the ‘misser’ and the ‘missee’ in these situations, the misser calls the missee with some regularity (in this case, once or sometimes, twice a day). Not that I am complaining, but it seems somewhat expected of the missee (me) to say the aforementioned three words to the misser (him). Which means the missee also has to pretend to be the misser. O, whatever!
Unlike most people who fake it and say the fateful three words with a great degree of nonchalance (I am sure some of them mean it too) to their significant other, when they are away from them, I don’t. I can’t. Say it. To anyone. I have explained this to the husband, who is still learning to deal with it, but I am sure it strikes him (and many others) as odd.
I don’t miss people. Or places. I remember all the times I have been away, and there have been plenty of those, and the calls back home (whether to the mother or the husband) have always been more of an obligation than a need. I am in the here and now, so flashbacks seem like a waste of time. May be the homeopath was right. May be I do have too much testosterone.
Marriage is full of motions, and saying that you miss your partner when he/she is away is one of those. Although I have come to terms with many others, I am still grappling with this one. I also think the true test for when you love someone comes when the person is away. It gives you the objectivity, distance and space to examine your love, to nurture it, feel it all over again. If you still have through the ‘I miss you’ motions, you never get the room to do it. Makes sense?
So yes, I had three days (going on four) of life without the husband. It felt strange to have a house to myself again, although said house is populated by a baby, two cats and a maid. But the point about these are that pleasantries are not expected and it’s a ‘to each its own kingdom’. It is liberating. The boy is just happy to have me around and speak without being spoken to, the cats are in their own hidey holes, waiting to be excavated, feeling a sense of calm that the paranoid cutlet who is always worrying about them running away is actually away. As for the maid, she is a girl after my own heart. Efficient, pro-active, and likes her silences.
The one thing that was truly liberating was that I didn’t have to act excited about a 42'' (television, what else?). There was less garbage generated (what’s with men and garbage?), easier to plan menus (the husband likes four vegetables, so I made all the rest in the vegetable kingdom in the last three days), read the paper and grab the pot without having to make a dash for it.
I think marriages should come with a built-in contract of one partner being away at least a few days a month (I would bargain for a week). It feels good. It gives perspective, objective. I have a friend who is constantly whining that her husband is never around (he is a pilot) and I wonder what her problem is.
Tomorrow, it will be back to business and choosing from four vegetables again. I am already plotting my getaway.