Blank Slate

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On Thursday, T and I are leaving on a trip.  We’ll be gone for five nights.  FIVE NIGHTS…without kids.  I was thinking about that tonight, and I realized that this will be the first time since 1988 that T and I have been alone for this long.  FIVE NIGHTS.  Oh, we have taken trips here and there.  We went to Vegas for our 25th wedding anniversary, but that was not a good time in our marriage.  We flew in, spent three awkward days trying to stay busy and not argue, and we flew back home.  We’ve taken trips to move kids or visit kids, but we haven’t taken a trip simply by ourselves since 1988.

Tonight, I thought back to the time in our marriage prior to 1988.  We would have been 24 and 26.  We had no money.  We didn’t take trips.  Sometimes we would take our tent and go camping for a weekend.  Those were fun times, but they were not real trips.  Then there were the kids.  We have taken plenty of trips as a family.  They were wonderful times, but they certainly didn’t include time alone for T and I.

While this five-day trip may not seem like a big deal to most people, it is a huge step for T and I.  You see, this is a work conference for me, and T asked me if he could come along.  Once again, that may not seem like a big deal, but it is.  While I often travel for work, T has never, ever been a part of that part of my life.  My, how things have changed.  T has registered to attend sessions at the conference, too.  Sessions, dinners, tours, cocktail parties…we will be doing all of these things together.  Instead of flying, we have decided to take our own car so that we can explore the area while we’re there.  Six hours together in the car.  Alone.  Once again, I am amazed.  I wonder what we will talk about without the kids along for the ride?  For the first time in 24 years, we will once again be spending time alone, not because of a kids, but because we have CHOSEN to spend time together.  I am FREAKED OUT!

I remember a time years ago when T was completely opposed to the idea of me getting a job.  He would say, “When you find a job that pays you as much as I make, take it, and I’ll stay home with the kids.”  T said that, and now I wonder who that man was!  (What a jerk!)   I went against his wishes, and I did go back to work.  For a few years,  I worked part-time, but eventually, I built a career that has come to mean very much to me.  Obviously, this wasn’t what T had planned for me or for us.  He had come to our marriage with a very different set of expectations, but life has a way of altering our best  laid plans.

Here we are 24 years later.  I do have a job pays me as much as T makes.  The kids (minus little Lola) are grown.  We have passed through a difficult time, many difficult times.  We are about to embark on a new chapter in our lives and in our marriage.  Our paths, once diverged, are beginning once again to merge.  24 years later, we will just be us, just two people spending a few days together.  I am FREAKED out!

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