I remember the first time my husband had to travel for work and I was left to manage a newborn, myself, and all life brings. Being a military spouse my husband travels and deploys a lot, so I have learned some things over the years to help manage life. Here are some tips for you if your partner also travels a lot for work.
stick with your personal routine
It’s key to stick to the routine even if your partner is gone. If you are like me you will probably realize how much you relied on your spouse to do even the littlest things within the routine. Sticking to your routine keeps things running as smoothly as possible. When my husband is gone my 3 year old never misses her nap and bedtime stays the same so when Dad gets back there is no confusion of new expectations.
begin and end day with a conversation
If you can try to catch up with your spouse at the end of the day, do it! We have been lucky with our deployments that we could Facetime every day. Not only is it good for your kids to see mom or dad but it is good for you to build trust and helps you decompress from a busy day. Also, hearing how crazy and hectic their working day has been can help reduce those jealous thoughts that come… “oh I wish I had free time”, ” I want to sleep in a comfy king-size bed and not be disturbed”.
Military Families: If you know you won’t be able to chat with your spouse make a good morning and good night video for your kiddos. We did this our last deployment and on the nights we couldn’t chat Blakely would still hear those words ” Daddy, loves you and misses you” which I know in the long run made a difference.
Our Recent Deployment Homecoming
let go of the cooking and eat left overs
Can someone say, “left overs”. When my husband travels for work I am all about the lefts overs. Before he leaves we make a couple dishes that can last a few days, so I don’t have to worry about cooking anything. And if things are going really well we might make pancakes and eggs for dinner and eat them while watching a Disney movie. Basically, I make dinners as easy & healthy possible and try to avoid any fast food. I don’t want my kid to equate dad being gone to us always getting fast food.
don’t stay up past your typical bedtime
For the longest time, I would stay up way past my typical bedtime when my spouse is traveling. You know just trying to catch up on blogging and binging my favorite tv shows. For some reason, it’s so much easier to push bedtime and has that extra cocktail when the spouse is away. But I can guarantee the next morning I always wake up regretting staying up those extra few hours. The best tip I can give is to get as much sleep as possible.
remember you aren’t alone
Having a spouse that travels can bring feelings of freedom and loneliness, I totally get it. The sad truth is my husband and I probably have spent more time apart than together over our 8-year relationship. But that is life when you have a spouse whose job requires travel. As someone who had a dad who traveled a lot and now a spouse traveling. Remember these days alone with your kiddos are memories that they will never forget and days that will help you grow as a parent and spouse.