“Are you going to stay married?“
“What’s going to happen with you and your husband?“
“I don’t understand why you’re doing this when he’s already in.”
These are all questions/statements I have gotten from various people this past month or so. Some people know my husband and I, some don’t (but still wanted to make comments). There are some people very close to us who I feel like don’t have faith in our marriage, so they try to get me to go reserves or not enlist at all. I have even gotten the, “Does your husband approve of this?“
David is 100% supportive of my decision to enlist. He’s heard me talk about it for years. Of course he doesn’t WANT me to leave. But he understands. He’s even been the main person pushing me to follow my dream, since my anxiety was holding me back. So if anyone would like a copy of the permission slip he signed, hit me up.
Even though this post is going to be about me preaching that David and I will be just fine doing long distance no matter what anyone says, I just want to start out by saying that it doesn’t necessarily mean we haven’t had doubts.It’s human nature. Worrying about the other person getting lonely, or getting really close with a coworker, etc. IT IS NOT A TRUST ISSUE. We know that one person wouldn’t do anything unfaithful to the other. But humans also can’t help their feelings. With us both being active duty, there’s going to be loads of schedule inflictions. Field ops, deployments, time zones, training, etc. It’s not going to stop for the next four or more years. There are going to be times where we won’t talk for long periods, or we will each be so busy that we don’t have the time to show the other the attention we would like. David plans on getting a second job after I leave because he can’t stand sitting at home by himself, doing nothing. And stress like this can take a huge toll on a relationship. I’m sure we’re going to argue. We’re going to get butthurt when the other one is too busy to talk. We’re going to feel a little jealous that something else is taking up all of the attention of the other. It’s going to be extremely ugly at some points.
And that’s okay.
I don’t know why people think that a couple arguing or going through a rough patch is such a terrible thing. If you’re going to be with someone for the rest of your life, then you can expect to not get along sometimes. It doesn’t matter if you’re doing long distance or you’re together 24/7, 80 years is a long freakin time to be with someone. I actually think it’s impossible to get along with ANYBODY 100% for that long. Stop thinking that you have to put on this perfect facade of your relationship. Just stop.
David and I know all of this. We know that there’s no telling when we’ll be living together again. There are a couple of things that we need to plan still.
But we are confident. We’ve done long distance before. We have to go back to facetime dates, holiday planning, leave dates, the whole shabang. And we are okay. We don’t want to be separated, but we’re staying positive. We talk about how exciting it’s going to be to have weekend visits again, to really appreciate our time together. We talk about how we’re going to deal with certain feelings coming up. Certain situations. We talk about how we need to improve our communication skills, so we’ll be A1 once we’re thousands of miles apart. We talk about all of the cool things we might get to do or see, since we’ll both be in different places. We even talk about our post-military life. The house we want to live in for the rest of our lives. Our future children.
There is so much adventure in our future. Some we’ll take on together, some we’ll experience apart. And we are so excited for the other person. Frankly, I’m happy David will get to live the next two years without a wife who constantly wants him to be home. Who is a total homebody and kind of forces him to be a homebody too. He’ll actually be able to go out with his friends or whatever without having to worry about spending enough time with me. He’ll get to grow individually. And for me, I will finally learn how to be on my own. I am 22 years old and I have never been on my own. From living with my family, to a college dorm with an awesome roommate and boyfriend who I was with 25/8, to being back at my parents house, to now living with my husband. This is my opportunity to grow up. To push out of this little bubble I’m in.
I’m sure that all of this radiant positivity we have will change as soon as we start missing each other. But all we have to do is remember everything we talked about. If I decide that I want to stay in the Army for a few more years and he wants to stay in Ohio and work, then we’ll get through that too. I have no doubt in my mind that as long as we stay focused on the bigger picture and keep God in our marriage, then we will be unstoppable. We will shock the haters, the doubters. We will continue to show others that it is not “impossible’. That it’s not about statistics. It’s about love. Determination. Courage. Commitment. Forgiveness. God. Faith. Hope.
When someone asks us how our marriage is holding up in a year or five, we will confidently say that we love each other more now than the day we got married.