9 Things I Learned While My Husband Was Away

The day before Hurricane Sandy was scheduled to hit the East Coast, my husband left for what was supposed to be a two day business trip, and ended up being…well…9 days. It was bad enough that he had to leave, but even worse that it coincided with what was rumored to be the worst storm to hit the East Coast in quite some time. Call me a wimp but I don’t like storms. Actually, I detest them, so I especially don’t like being home alone with the kids during one. It took everything I had to not sneak myself and the kids into his luggage. But alas, I had to put on my brave face for the kids. Thank God our area wasn’t affected by the storm — no loss of power or flooding. I’d like to think that He heard my cries … I mean, prayers (*wink*).

To say it was a challenge to keep up with a schedule for a 1, 3, & 5-year-old would be a gross understatement. So when my husband walked through that door on day 9, a familiar Destiny Child song came to mind (*que “Survivor” music*).

But there is always a lesson (or two…or 9) to be learned with any challenge, so here are a few of mine:

1. Thank God for Steve Jobs (RIP) and the invention of FaceTime!

There was something about being able to see my husband’s face when I talked to him that made me feel like he really wasn’t far away. There was a different kind of connection that made me feel like we were teenagers again.

2. I’m one lucky mom.

Even though they can be a bit of a handful, they are just as much a bunch of goofballs and they make me laugh myself silly. If I had to pick kids to get stranded with, I would definitely pick my own.

3. I’m an even luckier wife.

I hear so many stories of people that are married but might as well be single when it comes to parenting. Call me spoiled, but my husband is very hands-on with the kids, so I definitely feel it when he’s not around.

4. I’m not a supermom or superwoman…just a mom in charge (*wink*).

If I didn’t have the support of my family and friends, I might’ve crumbled under pressure. I know there are millions of single moms out there that do it on their own every day. So while I’m flattered to have been given these titles, I just felt like I was doing what was in my job description. When your co-worker calls out sick, you just have to step up to the plate and get the work done.

5. The kids are not any less messy, loud or disobedient when daddy is gone.

Nope, they have no sympathy for mommy. In fact, I think they took advantage of the situation.

6. The laundry will pile up and so will the dishes…but it’s ok.

I’m definitely not a neat freak. But I do get a bit…um…stressed when there is chaos and things get out of place. So I learned that I could either stay up all night cleaning and doing laundry, or get some sleep so I could try and keep up with the kids. Final score: Sleep = 2; Laundry = 0.

7. Learning to say “no” is that much easier.

When you’re a one woman show, you definitely learn how to pick and choose where to exert your energy. So picking dinner at home over a Chuck-E-Cheese birthday party is a no brainer.

8. God doesn’t make mistakes.

Not that I doubted this before, but I surely believe it even more now. God knows that my mental state depended on my husband being by my side for this journey of parenthood.

9.  Husband & wife make a great team.

I learned that even though I managed to keep the house together and keep the kids fed, my husband and I make one awesome team. I can’t imagine going at it on my own, and am so thankful that I don’t have to! At least until the next trip anyway…

Sometimes it takes a short separation from your spouse to appreciate just how much they mean to you and just how blessed you are to have a partner in marriage.  Take some time to reflect on your marriage today and then let us know why you appreciate your spouse.

Be sure to check out Black and Married with Kids, “like” them on Facebook and follow them on Twitter!


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  • Janeane Davis
    November 15, 2012 at 4:11 PM

    This is such a great article. I have been in your situation and your remarks are 100% accurate. When your husband is hands on his absence is felt and the children NEVER give you sympathy because you are on your own. And in the end, you won the sleep versus laundry game because laundry always reproduces, but sleep does not. This was a very good and very amusingly told article.

  • Marneda See
    November 15, 2012 at 5:03 PM

    Thanks Christine:-) This is a great article. I’ve had to sacrifice the laundry over sleep just to keep my sanity and believe me it was well worth it. I’m inspired by how you are doing it all. Even though us moms can do it on our own, it’s a blessing to have great husbands and partners by our side. Congrats on your first article. I look forward to reading many more great articles.

    • Christine St.Vil
      November 16, 2012 at 4:14 AM

      Thanks a bunch Neda! I completely agree with you. We can do it all but we don’t have to do it all and that is the beauty of it.

  • MELISASource
    November 15, 2012 at 5:40 PM

    Awesome article! And I agree that the times when a crisis or unexpected event comes into our lives is when we realize just how lucky we are in our lives, what’s important, and what’s not. Congrats on your new role with Blackandmarriedwithkids!

    • Christine St.Vil
      November 17, 2012 at 6:06 AM

      I completely agree with you Melisa! Thank you so much for the congrats and for sharing your thoughts. 🙂

  • DjRelat7
    November 15, 2012 at 8:28 PM

    Congratulations for being on BMWK! I can’t wait to read what you learned!

    • Christine St.Vil
      November 17, 2012 at 6:02 AM

      Thank you so much Dj! It is a two “page” post, so you can find the lessons learned on page two. Let me know what you think 🙂

  • T. Espi
    November 17, 2012 at 10:55 PM

    Hilarious and so very true! It’s nice to have someone to give you a break sometimes (as I surf the net while hubby entertains the kids LOL).

  • sheree
    December 4, 2012 at 3:58 PM

    This was great! The running man AND the perculator. You are hysterical!! 🙂 From one mom of a traveling hubby, hang in there! It gets better…until the next trip.

    • Christine St.Vil
      December 6, 2012 at 4:30 AM

      Hahaha!!! YES Sheree! It gets that serious sometimes and I couldn’t just explain my excitement in words 😉 I will definitely have to reach out to you so we can trade notes when the next trip comes around 🙂

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