I used to be a strong, independent woman. I spent my days working and my nights out with friends. And then I met B. When we dated long distance, we both still maintained a lot of independence. That was easy since we were on opposite ends of the country most of the time.
Six years of marriage with at least six different places called home later, we’ve learned to lean. We rely on each other. We consider each other when making decisions. Which isn’t to say we’ve always gotten it right.
While we lived overseas, our codependency was unhealthy. We had all the same friends, did everything together, and honestly it just wasn’t healthy. We both know that. I do think we’ve found a balance now. We lean on each other, but we aren’t trying to be everything for each other.
Which is to say that this next month is going to be tough. He’s out of town for the next 25 days (26 counting today, but I’m the only one doing that). I have good plans in place, but it’s hard to not have my partner in crime. We lean really well, time to see how we do on our own for a month.
I hate saying goodbye. Hate it. It is my single least favorite thing to do. To the point that when my husband kisses me goodbye in the wee hours of the morning, I tell him to be safe and come home. I tell him that I love him. But I don’t say goodbye.
The military has a saying that we don’t say goodbye, we say see you later. Goodbye is so final. And no one wants final.
B leaves tomorrow to go serve his IMA commitment for the year. It’s a fancy reserves type where he does his whole year in one month. He got a great location, USAFA, but due to timing and how busy he’ll be, I will be staying behind while he enjoys Colorado.
Which loops back to me hating goodbyes. Which a see you later is, no matter how much we don’t want it to be. I’m trying to soak up as much as I can, without adding the pressure of this being the last time we can do X for a month. But it’s not easy.
I’m not sure if I’ll say goodbye tomorrow or not. But I will tell him to be safe, to come home, and that I love him. And I’ll start counting down until I get to see him again.
Yesterday was our sixth wedding anniversary. Sixth. Where did the time go?
B asked me if that means we no longer count as crazy newlyweds. I don’t even know anymore. We’ve decided that since it’s only been two years since our vow renewal, that we can still claim newlywed status.
We spent yesterday doing chores. His car had to go to the shop. I had to go to work. The dog needed to be walked. Lunch was at Red Robin, dinner picked up from the counter at the grocery store. And it couldn’t have been a more perfect celebration.
Life and love are in the every day moments. Once in a lifetime trips are amazing, but they don’t build the foundation of life. They can’t. Going through a normal day, doing errands, and still loving and living? That’s where life occurs.
In six years, we’ve had a lot of once in a lifetime opportunities. But we’ve had even more life. Hard days full of tears. Boring days full of the mundane. Happy days full of laughter. Exciting days spent exploring. And, I wouldn’t have it any other way.
Well, B is a week in to his two months off of regular work. And we’ve got just over a week left until he’s gone for a month. We’re trying to squeeze in as much as we can before he heads off to Colorado.
one We headed down to Huntington Dog Beach this morning for a run and some fun. Loki loves this beach. I, typically, kind of hate it for running. We haven’t gone in quite some time, but I always feel slow and like every step is a fight. Today we changed two things up, first we went later so that the tide was further out and second, we ran barefoot. It made such a difference. We’ll pretend that’s what did it and not the last couple of months of training.
two Loki and I hung out on the patio this week while B was inside with a contractor taking care of our last big house expense. At least until I decide I really do want quartz countertops. We installed plantation shutters on all but four windows last year. The patio doors have curtains and there were three windows in the second floor stairwell that we just let be. Now that the neighbor units are finished we’ve decided we want them done. And, since we would need at least a 22 foot ladder to reach the top window, we’re letting the professionals do this one.
three I’ve had a rough few weeks. I applied for an awesome job and made it to the final interview round as one of two candidates. And then didn’t get it. I think this is the first time I’ve ever not gotten a job. I’ve been struggling a bit with teaching motivation since then. Yesterday, I received a boost in the form of a strange compliment. A student’s relative is an adjudicator for a testing system and they determined that he’s well advanced for his age/study time and must have an awesome teacher. I’m super grateful the mom decided to pass this on to me. It definitely helped me get my groove back.
four This dog, y’all. He really is all about that water. Today he was all over the ocean, jumping waves and then running from them. Last Sunday he was not pleased when our trails only let him see the water. Sometimes I feel guilty that he doesn’t have a pool here at home, then I’m glad that I don’t have to constantly have a wet dog.
five As I mentioned above, B is heading out next week. He’s off to serve his active duty commitment for the USAF Reserves. I am not looking forward to it. Plus, when he gets back he’ll have roughly two weeks before he transitions back to night shift. The last round of nights was super rough on us as a couple. We’re working hard to enjoy the time we have before he’s gone and also set things up for a better outcome when he goes back on nights. In a way, I’m glad the other job fell through as my hours are much more flexible now.
One of my favorite things to do is explore. When we lived overseas, a huge part of my identity was wrapped up in our travels. I loved planning, taking, and remembering our trips. Moving back to the US has been hard because we don’t travel as much as we did when we lived in Europe. It takes more effort to explore close to home.
My friend Kate is my inspiration. She explores Cleveland what seems like every weekend. She’s made me want to visit it. Even more, she makes me want to explore where I live as fully as she does her home.
This past Sunday, we hit up the Palos Verdes Nature Preserve for some hiking. Only half an hour from our front door, the preserve has miles upon miles of trails that all boast stunning ocean views. The loops we took netted us almost six miles of hiking and over a thousand feet of elevation gain.
I can’t wait to go back. The weather was perfect and the trails were amazing. We passed just enough people to not be alone, but had plenty of space to ourselves. Every trail was clearly marked and they were super easy to follow. Plus, those views. The ocean vistas accompanied the entire hike and brought with them refreshing ocean breezes.
This wasn’t an easy hike. We gave up and then reclaimed over a thousand feet in elevation. There’s no shade on the trails, so if it’s a sunny day, you’ll need extra water. The views were definitely worth it though. I can’t wait to head back out there to explore some of the other trails.
Today I am exactly 14 weeks from the Run Rock n Roll 10k on the Vegas Strip. We booked our hotels tonight, which somehow makes it more real than when we paid for the race. It’s time to get serious about my run training.
I’m following the Nike 10k training plan, though I plan to run weeks 2-7 twice and tweak my distance runs so I keep my endurance high throughout. I’m setting an ambitious pace for my training. I may fail completely, but at least I will have tried.
I also plan to keep lifting, at least two days a week following the Strong Lifts 5×5 program minus the deadlift. I hate running after lifting, but I know that in the long run that strength training is my friend.
I wrote out my paces and to be honest they scare me. But, I wouldn’t have it any other way.
I walked through without a backward glance. Everything old and familiar was behind me. Everything new and wonderful was ahead so that is where I looked. There were no regrets, no worries, no fears. Only excitement for the future.
It took six years for that decision to have a negative impact. Six years for a choice willingly made to come back and haunt me. The reality is that you can’t say yes to a major adventure without saying no to something else.
I don’t regret my choice. But for the first time I wish I could have had both. That, however, is an impossibility.
The worst part isn’t the loss of what is behind that door long closed. The worst part is being afraid to open new doors. Where I once embraced adventure, now I worry that each choice will have negative consequences years down the line. I feel paralyzed.
I stand in front of several doors now. I just have to find the courage to keep opening and walking through them.