Let’s face it….
It doesn’t take long to realize that if we’re going to be in a relationship with someone in the restaurant industry means there are nights when we’re going to bed alone. We’re setting the automatic coffee pot to go off in the morning, locking the doors, turning off all the lights, possibly tucking the kids in and hitting that pillow with no one to kiss goodnight.
It comes with the territory.
You are not on the same cycle as your other half. You pass through the night. You’re sleeping when he/she gets home and their sleeping when you wake up. It just is. It’s part of the dance you two do. Like an earlier blog post, this is not like your usual team sport. It’s a relay. He does the night shift and then hands off to you in the morning. It’s something that we ladies and men who are married to these nocturnal creatures either have to get used to.. or find a way to cope with it. Is it always desirable? No. But like our weeknight dinners alone, we quickly manage to create an evening routine that works for us. Why?
Because we’re resilient.
One of our greatest strengths is our ability to adapt.
Even though there are times when it stinks to go to bed alone, if you were to REALLY look at the situation, you’d find that there is a PART of you that enjoys having your evenings to yourself. (whether you admit it to yourself or to others is another story!)
If you didn’t, then this type of relationship wouldn’t sustain you.
Most likely one of these reasons will sound familiar to you:
- You enjoyed your single days, being able to come and go as you pleased and this type of relationship serves that feeling, that sense of independence.
- You are very driven in your own goals and so, the fact that you have events/school/get togethers in the evenings allows you to do those things without feeling the guilt that you are out, doing what you want.
- You are the type of person who NEEDS a solid amount of alone/quiet time to decompress, without a lot of the noise and distractions that would be around if your other half was there.
If you can admit this to yourself, then you can TAKE ADVANTAGE of this, see this as an OPPORTUNITY to create what YOU want for your life. (I mean, it IS your life, right?)
I don’t know about you, but when I know that I will be going to sleep alone, I actually look forward to it. I am a little bit of all three above, and having the evening to do what I want (whether that’s going out with girlfriends, working on my business, having a client coaching call, or just watching TV in peace – with FULL control of the remote) makes me feel grounded and at peace.
Doesn’t mean I don’t love my husband. Not at all.
Means I understand the VALUE of what this relationship brings me. *time to myself? check! It’s what I need in order to feel… well ME! It took me a long time to understand this. This WORKS for me! I actually ENJOY this!
I am sure that from an outsiders perspective, this might bring up thoughts that I don’t CARE about being with my husband, or that I’m selfish. (You ever get that vibe from others?) It makes sense, a “typical” relationship involves both parties spending every evening and weekend together. There’s the rub… THIS IS NOT A ‘TYPICAL’ KIND OF RELATIONSHIP. It has very different parameters, and what works for ‘typical’ relationships, does not, WILL NOT work for this type. Trying to fit this type of relationship into the box of whats ‘typical’ only brings up the belief that there’s only one way to do it and therefore, that there is something wrong. This kind of relationship is not for everyone.
Can you imagine how that belief can seep into your relationship? Causing resentment and doubt?
If that’s how you’re currently feeling, lonely that you have to head to bed alone, feeling like that MUST mean there is something wrong with your relationship, let me assure you - You are not alone. Anyone that’s just starting out can absolutely get hung up on how this is just not ‘normal’. It’s common that learning what works takes a while. This is just part of what makes your relationship tick. Isn’t that what you want to know anyway? Instead of spending time worrying that this is a big red flag, you could choose to see this as an opportunity, something you look forward to instead of something you dread.
How can you make this work for you?
To the contrary, I’m not being selfish, I understand how this works FOR me, instead of against me and am CHOOSING to see the perks in it. *Not to mention that this works for my husband too. When I am OKAY with our independence, it gives my husband a greater sense that ALL IS WELL, allowing him to focus on what he’s doing more, making him more present in his role as the one who runs the kitchen.
Happy wife, happy life, right?
When I have those moments when I miss my husband in the evenings (yes, they do happen)… when the thought of cooking a meal by myself, or heading to bed without our usual banter of laughter and love makes me feel sad, brings me even CLOSER to him. The next time I see him or am with him, I feel THAT much more connected and revived in my feelings toward him. I miss him in these moments and I allow myself to miss him. When these moments come up, we message each other with sentiments of love and longing… while he’s busy on the line, making sure that the restaurant runs smoothly. I still feel that moment of missing him, but when I understand that these moments are not a USUAL occurrence, I am able to pass through it without it feeling like I’m missing something, or that something is wrong.