For those of you who haven’t heard, this is kind of the time everything changes for us, military-wise. Jake will be traveling on and off for the remainder of 2018, and I will be staying at home where I can immerse myself in work. I’m simultaneously preparing myself for intense loneliness while also feeling extremely grateful we have experience doing long-distance already. If one thing’s for sure, it’s that we can do this.
Even still, it’s going to be hard! I got a little weepy while he was packing and then kind of lost it when he finally left. I’m always a little caught off-guard by how emotional I get with the goodbyes. So I’m brainstorming a few more creative ways to stay sane and busy from now until he returns. (And, ok, I spent the day in pajamas and moped a little bit).
- Working out more. I’m a member at the Equinox in Bethesda, which is on my way to/from work and extremely close to my apartment. Since I won’t be rushing home for dinner together anymore or trying to cram in more time together before Jake leaves, I’m hoping to spend more time getting whipped into shape.
- Practicing my Spanish. For some reason, I am extremely shy and self-conscious about my Spanish and basically refuse to speak it in front of Jake who is a million times better. I’ll be re-downloading Duolingo for some out-loud conversation in the privacy of my empty home.
- Learning how to cook. I’ve been saying this for months — literally since the first time Jake left in January — but now I have no choice since the absences are only getting longer. I’ve purchased How To Cook Everything, Smitten Kitchen’s Triumphant and Unfussy cookbook (though the recipes in it are decidedly not unfussy), and bookmarked the New York Times Cooking website. Open to favorite recipes, if anyone has any!
- Checking things off my to-do list. Anyone who knows me has heard me evangelize Wunderlist. I have a running list — several, actually — of various errands I need to run, groceries I need to pick up, cards I need to mail, people I need to call, etc. Wunderlist helps me keep track of it all and feeds my compulsion to stay occupied.
- Enjoying the silver linings. Being away from your spouse sucks, full stop. But there are a few upsides to living alone, particularly when it’s only temporary. My favorites: having the queen bed to myself, feeling free to work late, eating on my own schedule, and catching up on my favorite trashy shows. Also, having time do a little extra freelance writing on the side. My latest piece all about being a sucker to trends is here.
- Spending time with friends! It sounds so cliche, but I really, really missed having girlfriends. The women I’ve become close with here are primarily military spouses, but also a couple of women through work and one or two that I knew from college. Feels like I’m finally finding my people, and it is a dream. I’m also relishing the opportunity to call friends in different cities and plan trips to see them.
For those of you in long-distance relationships, or for other military spouses, I’d love to hear about your guilty pleasures and indulgences that you take advantage of when your partner is out of town. I am also definitely here as a resource for anyone who has questions about Navy wife life, being in a long-distance relationship, etc.
As for me, I’m off to spend the evening running errands, followed by a face mask and some red wine. Cheers!