This is a hard post for me to write. While I am open about many things in my life, I guard others very closely. Even with this supposed cloak of anonymity, I hesitate to put this out there (especially as I'm pretty sure that I've compromised my anonymity in at least one case; if this person hasn't figured it out yet, I'm pretty sure it will become screamingly obvious soon). But it's been weighing heavily on me, and I think that I need to express at least some part of it before I'll be able to accomplish anything productive in my studying.
I've alluded before to the fact that my wife and I have been experiencing some bumps in our relationship of late. This is not something I admit to easily. So many people in our lives have complimented us on our perfect partnership. Out of pride, embarrassment, sheer pig-headedness I say nothing to disabuse them of this idealized image.
And I recognize that it is not a bad relationship. Far from it. When I think of my complaints, I'm reminded of a scene from Bridget Jones: Edge of Reason: Bridget sits in a Thai prison and complains about how awful her ex-boyfriend was to her. The other women start talking about the horrible things men have done to them, such as forcing them into prostitution and drugs and beating them. They then ask Bridget what her ex did to her. Her real answer would have been something along the lines of, "He wasn't openly affectionate and didn't stand up for me," but she realizes how petty this is in comparison and so lies by parroting back what the other women said.
And my complaints wouldn't even match up to Bridget's. My wife and I are amazingly compatible, mind-blowingly so. And even as we work through things, there is always a part of me that knows we'll stay together.
And all of this is what makes it so hard to admit our struggles. I cringe to write the next sentence.
More than once, our discussions have toyed with the idea of a Trial Separation. And often the conversation died after this. The last time the topic came up, I was finally able to express how I feel about it. I realized that I'm not ready to divide up the household, even for a few months. What I wanted was a chance to get away for a couple days, with the hope that that's all I would need to know that I missed my wife. A trial separation with imminent return.
Apparently Goddess Fortune heard us and also noticed that my plans to head off to a hotel never quite materialized. So she sent my wife out of town suddenly. And so the experiment is off and running.
I miss her so much. It's not just a parenting thing. My son and I have our routine and rhythm; I'd be lying if I said it wasn't any harder than when my wife is here, but I can do it. I miss her.
And that's what I needed to know.