There. I said it. I miss my husband. No, he's not away on some weeks-long business trip or stuck in Manhattan due to any apocalypse-esque hurricane. Nope, he's only about 20 miles away and for some reason that 20 miles feels like 200.
I guess I
should preface this with the good news: J got a new job! Mostly thanks
to me, since I'm the one that forwarded him the listing online when I
saw it (and was slightly obsessed with him moving up the ladder to a
higher paying, more prestigious position). Okay, I suppose it also
helped that he went to an ivy league school and gained great experience
at the law firm he was currently with, but I like to think that my
emailing him the posting kicked off all this good news (however
delusional that may be). After an initial call to come interview and
another month or so of interviews later, J was offered the job, which he
promptly accepted. Score!
In a nutshell this job is everything we wished for while he was in law school. Tony street address in one of the best buildings in the city's financial district.
Marble lobby with gilded sculptures leering down at all who enter. An
office on one of the top floors. A view of Coit Tower and the
Transamerica Pyramid from J's window. Big clients and complex legal work. More money than I ever dreamed of
having at age 30. After years of uncertainty thanks to the effects of a terrible economy on the legal profession, we -- or I should say he -- had finally joined the big leagues.
those who've followed my blog over the last few years, you'd think this
is all I ever wanted. Frankly, it was. But as is the case with my
rose-colored lenses, I tend to only look at "how cool" a situation can
be without measuring the negatives as well. Stuck in the path of a
historical hurricane? Color me jealous. Lost in the wilderness for three days? At least you lived to tell about it. You were there when Lincoln was shot? Not only would I envy you, I'd also quietly sign up for more theater ticket reminders just in case.
of course when J got the formal job offer, I was beyond thrilled. We
celebrated with cigars and a bottle of Blue Label and stayed up all
night talking about how different our lives were going to be now that he
had this job. What I didn't consider was that every positive difference
also comes with a negative one. I was blind to the the yin and yang until he started work last Monday.
It's only been over a week and I already feel like he's had this job for ages.
How could I have thought this was all I ever wanted? Stupid, stupid me. I'm lucky now if
he gets home before 8pm, and even when he does it doesn't matter because
he's so exhausted from waking up early that all he wants to do is eat
dinner and go to bed. He loves his new job so much that he often loses
track of time in the office and only notices it's late when I call him
and remind him that the sun is coming up in a couple hours (okay, it
hasn't gotten to that point yet, but you get the point).
having dinner together once in the last seven business days is not all I
ever wanted. Watching Anderson Cooper 360 every evening with Ava as my conversational
companion is not quite the tradeoff I'd envisioned once J
had a Big Law job. Handing Ava over to J when he gets home so I can do
some things for myself like, oh I don't know, take a shower, tends to
quell any quality time we can spend together throughout the week. I just
want my husband back, but I guess this is the tradeoff. If I really want
the lifestyle I've always dreamed of, then I've got to give something up...no
matter how much it sucks.
So what's more worth it: time
or money? I miss our time together but I can't complain about the money,
so I don't argue about his long work hours because I know he's simply
providing for his family. How else will we be able to do all the things we want to do, like eventually buy a bigger home, travel the world, make real estate investments, (hopefully) retire early, etc. etc.? Does that mean my silence has been bought?
Slightly disturbing when thought about this way.
course J knows how I feel, but at the same time we're both realistic and
know that it's better to work harder younger and enjoy money later than
it is to work harder older and not have the time (or mobility) to enjoy
it in your geriatric years. Over waffles on Sunday, I told J that I
completely understand why he has to work so hard right now. I really do.
I am, after all, the person who sparked all this off by emailing him
that job posting. I wanted it so bad I could taste it. And as much as I
miss him, I'm inspired by his work ethic and commitment to his craft.
But at the same time I know myself and I know I can't do this forever.
Thankfully he understood, and visions of me in my 70s waiting for him to
retire while I lounge lakeside and alone on the banks of Como quickly
For now I'll just have to take it day to
day and hope it gets easier. At least he changed jobs at a time when
caring for Ava on my own isn't as harrowing as it initially was (the
thought of him making this transition when we first had her would have
been mortifying, to say the least). And because he's in the city now, it
gives me more of an excuse to head in and have lunch or dinner with him
when I can.
But still, even after five years of marriage, I have this
sense of urgency with him and our relationship. It's that
butterflies-in-your-tummy, I-can't-get-enough-of-you urgency that makes
you do crazy things when you're dating a boy you love, like stay up late
talking all night on the phone, make out like teenagers in the rain, or drive for hours just to see him for a
quick visit. It's a drug, that urgency, and for some reason I still
feel it with J, which makes him working like this all the more harder
for me to stomach. But paper covers rock and dollars cover wife, so
again I shouldn't complain.
Regardless, I still (and always will) miss him.
Take What Your Stories Give You
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