In full disclaimer, I had very different copy written in the draft for this post until I deleted it. You know how people tell you to “sleep on it” before you talk to someone about an issue when you’re mad or to “cool off” before you come back together to talk? Well, I was pretty upset and started writing an “authentically real” post that just turned into a sad/weird version of free form poetry. It only took a second glance to be like, “Nahhhhhh dawg…” and hit the delete button.
Why was I so upset?
Good question. I’ve had a tough past two weeks getting back into this heavy tour season. Todd has three tours in a row that will take us into the middle of May so it’s been a rough adjustment going back to that full of a schedule. Since I was already feeling down about being apart so much it was even tougher to swallow once I heard that another opportunity opened up and now they have 3 months more of travel starting only a few weeks after the third tour in May is over. Yowza. You can bet the tears started welling up pretty quickly once I saw all the dates on the calendar flying by in a flash. I ended up sitting on my kitchen floor, listening to the Funny Girl soundtrack, and bawling my eyes out. What a picture, huh? All the old fears start to enter my head…
How can being apart so much be worth it to him? It wouldn’t be worth it to me. Once a “dream job” comes with the cavetat of being apart from the one you love for 8-9 months of the year, it stops being my dream job if you know what I mean.
Anyways, this is not the first, second, or third time I’ve had these thoughts. I know that while his job has its fun times, exciting opportunities and chances to travel, at the end of the day it’s still a job. I am thankful for all the people who have to be away from their families so I can reap the benefits of different jobs that they hold. I love seeing my favorite band/comedian/author when they come to perform near me and I realize that they go back to their green rooms and call their families to say goodnight the same way that Todd does with me.
I know that deep inside I don’t want him to quit and work in a job where he doesn’t get to use his talents. Right now this is the best spot for him to showcase his gifts and I know that he wants the same for me when it comes to my skill set too.
It’s just a hard knock life sometimes on my end though. Wah, wah, wah, right?
But you are right. There are so many people with problems in the world much bigger than mine. A good reminder. I think the best strategy for me is to focus only on the countdown until I see him next rather than the whole year laid out before me…
Thanks for the pep talk. I needed it.
I was just in the car listening to them on the Alt 18 and every time one of their songs come on, I think of you and how you handle the not so fun parts of Todd’s job. I can’t imagine how hard the long stretches must be and thanks for sharing that side of things here on your blog. You, Elsie, and Emma always look amazing, produce amazing projects, and just all around kill it, so it’s nice to know you aren’t wonder woman all the time- now it’s more like 98% of the time! lol Anyhow, this is getting awkwardly rambly, so I’ll cut this off, but I love your work and love Todd’s music and thanks for being willing to give him up for such a long time, so that he can use his talents!
East Coast Creative
Aw thanks Monica! Just trying to keep it together most of the time so definitely not wonder woman over here. Thanks for the support though!
Thank you for letting him share his gifts, he was brilliant in Birmingham. A real highlight of my trip. I think the first couple of weeks are the hardest then they’ll fly by
So glad you got to go! Wish I could have been there too 🙂
I can understand this (on a much smaller level) and it’s really tough. Sending you love and strength. <3
Thanks Kristin, I’ll take it!
Oh Laura, I have such a soft spot for you. I know people can be quick to say “get over it” but man… it’s hard. Not only having a traveler for a soulmate, but one who is also a musician. The love of my life has 2 jobs, he’s a lead graphic designer at one job and musician too. He’s got practices and shows and recording. He has to write and manage so many roles. Aside from that, we are both busy with our children. We are just dating but have been for a long while and finding time is hard – but worth it. When a show falls on a night that I could have seen him, or I have a parent teacher conference that keeps me from him it IS hard to not ache like never before. The point is, you should miss your love that much. Pouting is important in the process and I’m sending you hugs.
On the side, your work for A Beautiful Mess has really become my favorite. You’re talented and I like that you are so productive when you could still be on the floor crying to “Funny Girl”. Love and Luck in the new year. It’s going to be all right. XO
Aw, thanks Johnna! It sounds like you totally have been through it too. And you’re right! The moment I stop caring he’s gone we have much bigger problems! Thanks for the kind words!
My husband went on warped tour for the first time this summer as a photographer. And it was way harder than I expected – I even really filled up the time with girlfriend trips, things I always wanted to try etc, but it still felt like a huge bummer coming home and no one was there.
And it can be hard because they light up when talking about those experiences and what they did and want to do – it can be a tough pill to swallow. You want to be the thing that lights them up and it I know it can cause some jealousy for me. At the end of the day, kind of like you did, I realized seeing that person you love light up in that way makes it worth it.
Oh man, it’s just as tough for crew and other traveling members of that world so I hear you! And I fill the house with kitties and it feels so much less empty 🙂
From someone much older and coming up on 31 years of marriage, I dealt with my husband being gone for a big part of the time for several years and it was tough feeling like a single wife and mother especially during holiday seasons, birthdays, family functions and more but you will make it through and letting your feelings out is actually a very good thing, rather than bottling it up inside. I don’t have any tips or tricks that magically make it go away but you are a strong woman and you will survive because you do have a strong relationship and it seems he understands the times you just have to let it out. And as years go by you may actually enjoy some of the times you get to have the time to yourself as I do actually miss it alittle bit sometimes, but not enough to want to go back most times, lol. Just always keep it from being apart for too long at a time as yall seem to do with you going to the performances when you can, even when it seems to make finances tight, being together is always worth more, you can always make more money, you can’t get time back and it seems yall do this as much as possible.
Yes, being together as much as we can is so important! It’s a little harder since I work full time here at home, but we have to do what we can…thanks for the tips!
I saw Mutemath in Bristol, UK last week and needless to say they were amazing. It was a real pleasure to have such an amazing musical experience. As I watched them though I did think ‘damn this is a long way from home for them’. I know that there is no real comfort in being away from your number one (I know I wouldn’t deal with it well) but I hope it gives you a bit of comfort that they really knocked it out of the park and making amazing things.
Hang in there.
Awesome, so glad you got to see them! Wish I could have tagged along too 🙂
I couldn’t imagine what it would be like to have to say hello and goodbye so often. The fact that you never give up- even during those days where you want to say “I quit” so badly is absolutely inspiring. Some seasons in our lives are harder than others, thank you for sharing yours with us.
Yeahhhh, as you hear me complain it’s not so easy! Just have to try and focus on the positive!
This gives a totally real perspective of anyone who tours around the world for their job! I have friends in many different cities and countries, and I can’t imagine my (future) husband being away for so long! But absence makes the heart grow fonder, right? Even though the absence is the absolute worst!
Also I totally love your jacket in the photo! Do you remember where it is from? If not, that’s okay!
Love hearing your take on life!
Thanks for the support! And I love that jacket too! It’s from forever 21 🙂
Something I heard a couple years has really stuck with me and might make you happy: say “I CHOOSE to” instead of “I GET to” when dealing with anything difficult. So instead of framing Todd’s absence as “I get to be alone for 9 months” think about it instead as “I choose to do __________(fill in the blank) while Todd is gone.” This is supposed to play a mental trick on yourself to get psyched up for things that are not super exciting and positive thoughts are healthier in the long run. So- brainstorm, what do YOU want to do/learn/make/experience over the next nine months? Think of it as a Laura boot camp and it might help time pass a little more quickly 🙂
Good thought! I definitely have to get my list together of all my projects when he leaves but that’s totally what keeps me sane. Thanks for the tip!
Aw, I wish I could give you a big hug. I can’t completely understand how you must feel with those huge stretches, but my hubs travels for work, a couple of weeks at a time to other countries. The lack of talking makes it way worse when they’re gone too. I hope things get better and you have lots of fun girl time with girl friends while he’s gone. I know that doesn’t replace the time with him, but I hope it softens the lonely times too. 🙂
Yes, other countries is the hardest for sure! Different time zones, can’t always get wifi to call, and I’m so much more jealous! Girl’s nights are the best 🙂
Every time my man travels for work, I lose my mind ever so slightly. And he only travels for a week at a time, and it’s only here and there. Your strength and patience with how much traveling Todd does blows me away! And you totally need (and deserve to have) those moments on the kitchen floor. You should probably throw some donuts or ice cream into that little mix.
You are both so talented and I’m so glad you guys share that talent with the world. I’m so excited to see the guys here in Minneapolis in a couple months and love love love all your posts on ABM & here! Keep on keepin’ on! 🙂
Thanks Jenny! And believe me, I soothe myself with pizza as needed!
Personally I think you should take this time to work on your Arrested Development nail polish line (man, me and my boyfriend lost it when we read those Instagram posts!) I agree with the above comments, I love the crafts and ideas you share on ABM and I hope that keeping busy helps when your man is away. I was really keen to go see Mutemath when they came to the UK but living wayyy up north at the top of Scotland made it pretty impossible. But when I saw the tour was hitting here, I did think about you and your previous post about long distance love. I don’t know if its something me and my boyfriend will encounter in the future (it might, you never know) but when you published that post, it came at a time when it was a distinct possibility and I was starting to freak out. You should take comfort that your advice really does help people when they come across these situations. I hope what sounds like a strong network of gal pals around you help when things are tough and please keep posting those pun tastic and very pink and awesome snapchats and instas – they are seriously my fave. This was a bit rambly I think but I guess I’m trying to say keep on keeping on, it’ll all come good in the end. And everyone needs a lil Funny Face cry now and again x
Thanks for the kind words Victoria! All those projects really do help the time go by and I’m so happy if any of my weird ramblings help any other gals out there. Hope you get to see the boys next time they come though!
As a wife of a former professional baseball player and now coach I totally get it. His season is typically 8-9 months a year once you factor in spring training and playoffs. He is gone that whole time and it is so unbelievably tough. Baseball is his life and dream and I would never want him to actually stop doing it but I wouldn’t mind just one year with no season. It’s always so tough when he first leaves and I’m so sorry you’re struggling with it!
Hoping it gets easier for you!!
You totally get it then! Thanks Emily, hope you get some together time soon!
I love what you do here and over at ABM 🙂
I just wanted to put out there a method that has worked really well for me to get over sadness, anxiety, and doubts, that’s easy to do by yourself once you get the hang of it and do it continually; EFT tapping. It’s not for everyone and I was sceptical at first but it helped me get through hard times. If all else fails though, cuddling cats is also a great option 😉
Hang in there!
Hey Laura! Just want you to know that my husband Bert and I pray for all the guys in the band and their families – can’t imagine how difficult it must be. Please know that there are folks out there that care for you and pray you’ll find a way to manage this. Hang in there!! We love MuteMath and the music but we love you all too ♡
You have to be strong, and I hope these comments will give you more power to handle it.
I went to see Todd play this week-end when he came to Paris. I was so excited as I indirectly felt close to you in some way. The concert was amazing !
I can’t even imagine how difficult it must be for the both of you to be apart for so long. Yet as you said, Todd is so good at what he does and you are too ! I love the work you do with ABM, it is all so inspiring.
So good luck and keep it up as I am always reading 🙂
This is the second time your writing has hit so close to home and been exactly what I needed to read. We are in different boats but floating in the same ocean. I am sending you the happiest vibes and I’ll be thinking of you while having my own Funny Girl moment later on today. Chin up <3
Oh, I’m so glad if it helped you at all! Keep your chin up too and I hope you bounce back soon!
I’m with you. My man is home for three months and then away 9. He works in baseball and although I love the game, and I’m in love with him, I always find myself looking forward to Thanksgiving. He too is extremely talented in his profession and I know he loves it. The late night messages and calls are what get me through the long season. Knowing he loves what he does & that he will come home to me makes me smile. Chin up. It does get easier
Oh man, 3 months and then 9 more! That must be tough, hope you have some fun projects to keep you busy too!
You are allowed to feel like this, it’s hard!
It doesn’t matter what their job is and what your circumstance is – being away from someone you love for such a long time sucks.
Just know he loves you 🙂 and to get all the negative thoughts out of your head because they aren’t true.
You are amazing, and you obviously just need a cat or two more <3 heh
I wish I could get a few more! Space issues man…
Reading this post made me really sad and think about how much I would miss my family if I was away from them. I am so jealous of my time with husband and my 9-month old son that I hate being away from them any time outside of working hours. (Let’s be real. The working hours are the hardest.) I can’t imagine what it’s like spending so much time away from your best friend. You deserve a big old pass on this one, large enough that you could have posted that free form poetry thing. 🙂
It takes a strong couple to be apart for so long. I think just remembering that this is only for a limited amount of time and reminding yourself that it will make you really appreciate your time together and not take each other for granted is the key. I hope that the time that you are away from each other goes by quickly though!
Yes, you have to appreciate the time you do have, I totally agree!
Great post Laura…and I just wanted to tell you how much I admire you and you are amazingly talented as well as your husband.
I will be seeming him play here in Charlotte this thursday and have been looking forward to it as I have been a huge fan of their music
for some time. I can’t imagine the difficulty of maintaining a relationship with the distance but just reading your post shows me the
devotion and love you have for him. Be strong and use this time to continue to share your creativity… because it truly is your gift and I’ll continue to follow both of you… as it brightens my day to hear his music and see your amazing artistic DIY’s !
Oh thank you! So glad you’re into both Gummermans and what we do 🙂
It has dawned on me recently that my boyfriend’s band is right on the cusp of becoming something much larger than I think any of the members ever thought. When he gets excited about the future I can’t help but get terrifed for what it means for us! We have been together for about 3 years now so I know we mean the world to each one another, but it’s very hard to imagine our life together changing so drastically. It helps more than you know to read that no matter how hard it gets you can always make it through. Thanks for being so rad and keeping grounded through it all, it really gives me positive thoughts for the future. PS I work in fashion and you are definitely my style guru many days of the week 🙂
I hear you! That’s so tough, when good news for them as a band is sad news for you personally. Enjoying the time you do have and making an effort to be together is so important so keep your hopes high! You can do it!!
I’ve been reading your blog for a while … I very rarely ever comment online but I just wanted to say hang in there! It must be super tough. My husband and I run a home business together, so we have the opposite problem! We’re together 24/7 – we live, work, eat, socialize, well basically do everything together. Every. Day. And trust me, that’s not a cake walk either! I guess every couple has their journey they need to take.
Your posts always feel so real and genuine to me. I know it’s not easy putting yourself out there and showing vulnerability. But that’s what keeps me reading your blog!
Thanks for sharing. Stay strong! x Rebecca
Thanks for the encouragement Rebecca! I’m sure it’s easy to get on each other’s nerves in your case, but be glad that you get to be together! Thanks for reading! 🙂
Thank you for all of your hard work and endurance Laura. We are thankful Todd is supportive of your talents. It’s very refreshing to read about the sweet relationship you have with one another, hence the difficultly being apart. Yes, this is definitely a gentle reminder to be thankful for the get-to-see-your-hubby-everyday folks. Thank you for sharing Laura.
I don’t usually comment on your blog, but while I was reading I felt I had to do it, because it’s kinda the same for me. In my relationship, I am the one who’s travelling a lot . I am archaeologist, and I really don’t have a real schedule over the year and we can’t make medium-term plans (not even short-term). It’s really annoying when you think the work is over, so you can be reunited with your husband/boyfriend/significant other and suddenly they reschedule the work so you have to change all your life plans.
It’s my dream job, and I worked so hard to get it, but sometimes I think if it’s worth it, if our relationship will survive for being apart 4 or 5 months a year. But then I ask to myself: and why not? We love each other, we have been together for the last ten years, and yes, we have some difficulties for being apart, but we try to make it easy for both of us, travelling when we can to be together, skyping, etc. (obviously, you already know this, haha).
i just can say: stay strong, and hand in there!! The doubts and anxiety comes and goes, but we have to keep that thoughts away. I can tell, If you love each other, the time to be together again wil fly!
Thanks for the thoughts Sara! Sounds like you have a pretty unique job too!
Thank you so much for posting this! It read really beautiful and I think it captured how so many other people. While, yes, there is some amount of suck it up that is required, please don’t pay attention to the people who tell you to “just get over it”. I feel like the only people who say that have never experienced what it is like to maintain a healthy marriage long-distance. Healthy long-distance relationships require more effort than “just getting over it!”.
Just remember to be kind to yourself and to know that it’s ok to be sad sometimes, angry sometimes, and lonely sometimes. That’s just life and you’re not a robot 🙂
My husband and I do check-in Sundays when we’re apart for loooong periods of time, which is probably not feasible for you guys because of his schedule, but maybe? Every Sunday at a particular time we sit down for a vchat date. Sometimes he orders me take out and has it delivered to my apartment, or we both cook a meal. Then we sit, eat, chat, share screens to watch youtube videos or movies and then check in with the following questions:
1. How did you feel loved by me this past week?
2. What does your week to come look like?
3. How can I be supportive of you in the week to come?
These questions are really great because both partners can feel appreciated and both partners can feel heard. These help the distance feel imposing for me.
Best of luck!
You’re such an amazing, creative and talented woman!
What good ideas Christine! Your Sunday routine sounds lovely! And you are right, we aren’t robots so we do need to get those feelings out and I agree that the most critical people have never lived this life so they can never really understand. Thanks for your kind words and support, hang in there!