When Ma Luffin Mayun's Away - Round One

No treading easy and breezy for us into the shift of schedule change that Summer brings.  No way, uh uh.  Nope, we slap jumped the ship of normalcy into the choppy seas of change straight out of port.  On the day Brilliant Beauty finished fourth grade, Ma Luffin Mayun left for a ten-day trip to India. 

In case you were wondering, the mathematical equation for that is
   1 me
-  1 husband
+ 3 kids for 240 hours

In case you were wondering, I'm not going to divulge everything that equation equaled.  It was harrowing (and sometimes harrying) and a lot of times hilarious.  But it's swing from monotony to mania could snap your neck.

Does this sound like a sob story?  Maybe.  Is it?  Not completely.

I confess I ended the week less shouting, "Look how awesome I am and all that I managed in these ten days!" and more choking out a "Thank God we survived that!"

Less Gloria Gaynor, more Donna Summer.

Round One: marriage
Weeks with Ma Luffin Mayun absent (which happen with a degree of frequency each summer because of his work in vocational ministry) are always, ultimately, good for the two of us.  We've grown quite past the pining away for each other too heartsick to go on in the other's absence.  We no doubt miss each other, and in so many ways more than those two kids that used to pine away.  We've gone from the shallows to the deep in this thing of our oneness.  But we've grown up enough to know that if we are absent from each other it is certainly because one of us is away doing something that both of us talked through, thought through, and prayed about doing before it ever happened.  It doesn't mean we like it, but we get it, and we're both behind it.  We start and finish from the same page.  That makes all the difference.

These times apart also remind me that we can live without each other.  He and I are not together because we have to be (though we both believe we are bound by covenant and not by contract).  It is not a relationship based in co-dependence but rather interdependence.  I don't use him to define me, nor do I define him (sidenote: he does not define me, but fourteen years into this life together who I am with him is as first nature to me as my femaleness.  I don't wake up everyday and have to pep-talk myself into being a woman or check to make sure all signs still point to "yes".  I am a woman.  And I am my beloved's and he is mine).  Part of the reason we don't fall apart when we are apart is because we don't draw all of our conclusions of absolution about ourselves or the daily world around us based on what the other one says or thinks or feels.  Instead, we are partners walking side by side working this life out together, and some days we just have to do that from thousands of miles away.  In the other's absence we have the opportunities to honor our oneness and our covenant in unique ways...focusing our thoughts and prayers more on the other's behalf, reflecting on the privilege of days spent together in this life acknowledging more vividly the reality that we are not guaranteed one more day, and making choices throughout the day filtered through the question, "If my love were here, are these the same choices I would be making?  Are these choices honoring of who we are?" 

We feel the deep need for each other, but we cannot fill all of the needs of the other.  When we are literally separated for days on end this becomes so much clearer.  We can live without each other.  We just absolutely choose not to.
I love him so much more every time he comes home.

So round one of marriage when Ma Luffin Mayun's away: Gloria Gaynor - 1, Donna Summer - zip.

Round Two: the kids...

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