There is one thing that Lisa and I have concluded in regards to traveling with her job – we absolutely need each other. As sappy as it may sound – we have learned that life apart just does not work as well as life together. This past weekend I had to return home alone for a friends funeral (see “A Sock Hat and a Sacrifice”) and to take care of some other business. Lisa stayed back in Cambridge. It was just strange for both of us.
I have heard it said that occasional separation between a husband and wife is a healthy thing and I agree that couples should have the ability to be apart while maintaining trust and affection. That being said, Lisa and I have had to depend on one another to such an extent while traveling, it seems abnormal to be apart. We are all each other has as we settle into one place or another. Now that we have been here in Cambridge for six months, we have made friends and can now feel safe being separated for extended periods of time. But separation is not an easy thing – it is an adjustment that does not come without some anxiety for both of us. We don’t sleep as well at night and find ourselves worried and anxious about each other while we are apart. The truth is we have so much fun together – life apart just seems incomplete.
My heart goes out to those who have lost a spouse. I know of several who have had to reset their lives without their lifelong partners and I have a great admiration for their ability to pick up the pieces and carry on. There will come a day when that will happen in our lives – perish the thought. Knowing that – we cherish the time we have. We could not wish anything more for our children and their marriages. Lisa and I have fun together. We laugh a lot. We talk a lot. We dream a lot. We are aware of many (mostly men working in the oil and gas fields) here in our campground who are alone due to either being unmarried without a spouse or geographically separated from them. Loneliness must be the most horrible of human experiences. After my dad passed away, I witness my mother slip into loneliness and depression and was helpless to alleviate the pain in her life. Looking back – I almost wish I had been more sensitive to her situation and may have even considered moving her into our home. It was a hard lesson I learned about how life changes can be devastating. These men in our campground are making enormous amounts of money in the oil fields – but many seem so unhappy as they have nobody to share it with – no one to come home to. Money cannot buy that. (Well, I suppose money can buy that – but let’s not go there.)
So I write today thanking God for having someone to share my life with. Lisa is glad I am back here in Cambridge. I am glad to be back here with Lisa. It may be she was tired of fixing her own supper and lunch and hated driving herself to work. I’d like to think that she still thinks of me as that good-looking stud she married thirty-one years ago and missed seeing her hunk of a husband.
But who am I kidding? It was the lunch.