Monday, September 12, 2011

License to hunt

Man, have I been remiss in keeping up with this blog. I just haven’t gotten into a new routine yet. I refuse to let this blog come between my husband and I so I have not been updating it during our alone time. However, I can’t really update it when my daughter is awake because she wants to push all the buttons on the keyboard. I used to do it after she went to bed, but that is our only alone time now so I’ve been prioritizing him over the blog.

It has just been a busy few weeks. I am juggling so many balls with returning to work, getting the baby readjusted to daycare, and trying to get reacquainted with my husband that I decided if something had to be dropped, it was going to be this blog.

I’m sorry if you’ve been waiting impatiently to hear about reintegration. It has definitely been different. Having the baby has made it so much harder to feel like we’re getting on the same page and developing emotional intimacy again. So much of our time is focused on her because she demands so much attention, that we really don’t have much energy or time to devote to each other.

It feels like one of us watches her while the other one takes care of an errand or laundry or just does something that needs to be baby free. Then we switch.  It seems like very rarely are we both available to do anything. And my husband doesn’t multi-task well. If he’s focused on the baby, he can’t really do anything else. I can kind of listen to him tell a story or talk and take care of her, but I have to pause him quite a bit to tell her something or stop her from doing something, etc.

He got home on a Thursday. The whole family was here until the very next Sunday. I went back to work Monday, and the baby went back to daycare. He has been working on and off since he’s been home, but his time off has been filled with hunting, fishing, scouting places to go hunting, running errands for his hunting, and spending time with his sons and friends hunting. Are you sensing a trend here?

I’ve tried to be completely understanding because he spent an entire year away from his whole life, all the things that make him him, but it is taking a toll on us. He spends a lot of time preparing to go hunting or taking care of what he’s killed on top of the times he actually goes hunting or takes the new puppy to practice hunting.  I don’t begrudge him the time, but it has made it hard for us to have time together.

When he goes hunting it is usually very early in the morning, which is when I’m sleeping so that doesn’t present a big problem except for the fact that he is then tired and asleep before the baby or right as I put her down, cutting short adult time.

We just haven’t had enough time to get past the day to day conversations and really focus on having some serious conversations about us, about how we’re feeling and processing this reintegration. I feel like a failure that he's been home for a month and we're still barely more than scratching the surface of truly being together again. I know it will just take some time, but when every minute of our time is already ticking down to his next departure, I really want to get back to us.

I know it is only Sept. 12 and hunting seasons have just begun. I just hope that he starts feeling like he's done enough, been outdoors enough, so that he feels like himself again soon. We can't get back to us until he feels like himself again, so until he feels like he's OK, I guess he has a license to hunt.