An Indirect Love Letter

Absence diminishes mediocre passions and increases great ones, as the wind extinguishes candles and fans fires. ~ Francois de La Rochefoucauld

I am le tired.

This is similar to ordinary tired, except that, being French, it possesses more je ne sais quoi, and some ennui.

Loving Husband has been doing his patriotic duty for the last week. Without going into too much detail, he has only been around for an hour in the mornings. In order to avoid disturbing me and Sausage in his comings and goings, he’s been sleeping in our guest room.

It’s not so much that my workload is increased by his absence, though that’s part of it. And it’s not just being on-call 24/7, though that is also taking its toll.

I’m lonely.

That’s a hard thing to admit, when I’m spending all my time with another (very short, inarticulate) person. It’s a problem I’ve always had, though — for a dyed-in-the-wool introvert, I have a remarkably hard time dealing with loneliness.

Some things are nice about Loving Husband not being around. I can eat when I’m hungry, rather than adjusting myself to his schedule. I can drink a glass of wine while watching a chick-flick after Sausage is in bed, and shamelessly weep great big lady tears. I can eat an entire pint of Ben and Jerry’s without anyone raising an eyebrow (and without having to share it).

Being alone has brought be face-to-face with the thing that I’ve found hardest about being a Stay-At-Home-Mom — being isolated. I’m not good at making friends, being that I’m almost completely unencumbered with social skills. The friends and family that I do have around, I fear to ask too much of; I don’t want to seem needy, even if I kind of am. At least for the moment.

Lonely penguin is lonely.

Why am I spilling all this out in such a public forum? Maybe because I’ve found myself included in a rather wonderful group of supportive, smart, funny people online. I’ve never physically met the vast majority of you, but you make me feel connected to something. Thank you for that.

Maybe I wanted to try something different. Do a bit of confessional blogging. Publicly discussing my weaknesses, working my way through my issues, finding catharsis. That’s not really my thing, though. I deal with my issues by cracking jokes and pretending that nothing really gets to me.

Ugh, this is getting depressing. Here. I dare you to stay unhappy while listening to this song.

Whew. Do you feel better? I feel better. I don’t know half of what she’s saying, but that Arisa always cheers me up.

So maybe I should take this in another direction. Being without Loving Husband, even only for a couple of weeks, makes me really realize just how great he is.

He cooks. I don’t eat nearly as well when he’s not home. He does a fair amount of the cleaning, especially in the kitchen, since he knows how much I hate that. He’s always willing to give me the time I need to be by myself, away from the baby; but he’s also always there with a hug when I need it, and very often he knows that I need one even before I do. And I just don’t sleep as well when he’s not there beside me.

I miss him terribly. It’s not as bad as when he’s had to leave for months at a time, but then, when he did that, we didn’t have Sausage yet. Everything seems … bigger. Worse. More intense, since a baby has been added to the mix.

So I guess I’ll leave this uncharacteristically un-jokey post by saying that I love my husband, and I can’t wait to have him back on a schedule that allows him to be with us. With his family.

We miss you, love.

17 responses to “An Indirect Love Letter

  1. Do you have my phone number? If you don’t, I will give it to you, and you should call it sometime you feel lonesome.

  2. It must be very difficult and very lonely at times, especially with Sausage. It’s okay to be needy and lonely sometimes, and especially in these circumstances.

    Now go get yourself some Ben & Jerry’s and order a nice pizza. 🙂

  3. I identify with this post on many different levels. Being married to someone with patriotic duties is tough and being a stay at home mom can be isolating. I used to take my daughter out in the front yard and pray that one of my neighbors would take out the garbage or walk their dog so that I could say something to an adult with a full vocabulary. I must have looked so desperate.
    I can tell you that it gets easier as they get older and you start interacting with other parents more. I’m also terrible at reaching out and it still got better.
    In the meantime, tell Sausage to pick up the slack and be more supportive-cook an occasional dinner, give mom a foot rub! One year olds can be so obtuse. Geez! These kids think that just because they’re short and wear a diaper that they can just sit around all day eating Cheerios off the floor.

    • You are amazing. Thank you for your words of wisdom, and for cheering me up! I’ll be sure to relay your message to Sausage — at 4:30 am, when he’s wanting to be fed. Deadbeat.

  4. Yep if there is one word to describe motherhood, it’s definitely isolating! (On bad days, anyway). That’s why we mums blog isn’t it?

    • Blogging certainly does help! Even if I do spend most of my posts cracking jokes, at least I get to use my big girl words. And all the other bloggers I’ve “met” are amazing. It’s a great community!

  5. My mom was in a similar situation. My dad was out at sea, and she alone with two young kids. She would take trips to the supermarket just to try to engage in some form of adult conversation. It ain’t easy. It gets better when the kid starts talking…of course most of our conversations center around Dora, trucks and trains.

    • I suspect that it will be easier, too, when he’s a little bigger and getting involved in more things with other kids (and thus, other parents). Right now his nap seems to directly conflict with every group or organized activity in our neighborhood. And it’s really not as bad as it would have been if we’d had Sausage while my husband was on active duty. I probably shouldn’t complain, because other people have it so much worse than I do. But still. It’s my blog, and I’ll whine if I want to!

  6. As another stay at home mama, I feel the exact same way. When my Handsome is working lots of overtime, it makes me really appreciate him. One thing I can say is that now that my girls are around school age, I atleast get to volunteer there sometimes and get to talk to other adults. it helps. And being a stay at home mama is a hard job… the hardest in my opinion. We are isolated. But that Goodness for the internet! I don’t know how my mother did it.

  7. Awww, I hope you feel less lonely soon. It is very nice to have met you here on the interwebs! As an introvert who cracks jokes, I empathize. My months home on mat leave were the loneliest ever. I often say that Facebook saved my life as it was my only connection to my mom friends after moving away. Now I at least have adult interactions at work, not the same as having close friends, but it does help a bit.

    And it is your blog so you can whine and wine any damn time you feel like it!

    • I do have a couple of good friends, but I don’t get to see them every day, and the days without any adult interaction are the longest days EVER. People must think I live on Facebook — which I sort of do, in fourteen second increments, separated by bouts of “What do you have in your mouth” and “Please don’t torture the cat.”

  8. I can sympathize with you! Having a husband who travels frequently can be really hard. And since we will abroad I just don’t have that support system. It is lonely sometimes. But you are right- absence makes the heart grow fonder, too.
    Thanks for stopping by to make my SITS day so fun. xx

    • And thank you for coming by here! I actually really miss my support system from living abroad — it took me a long time to build, but once there it was intense. I’d love to have my friends from Italy less than 6000 miles away! Good luck to you with establishing yourself in your new place!

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