Updated: Oct 20, 2018
Okay, okay. I know the title sounds heavy. Saved your marriage?
To be fair, no my marriage wasn't in shambles. No, there wasn't even talks of any separation, but we were in a rut. It was what we referred to as a "roommate" situation. We were unknowingly drifting farther and farther apart from each other. Now unless you know us, you're probably wondering how? Well, it was pretty textbook. Tony worked on the road full time. He works for PreSonus Audio Electronics, a music technology manufacturer based out of Baton Rouge, LA. He was gone 2 - 3 weeks out of each month touring the world, doing demos for reps and showing new products. So what did that mean for our kids and myself? Well at first, it wasn't so bad. We would spend a lot of time with my family and extended family. We would have movie nights and tent forts in the living room. It was a lot of girls time. Time, in which I am and will always be grateful for.
But after a while, the forts and the movies stopped. It went from being girls time, to the everyday normal routines. Family went from asking where Tony was at all the family functions, to just correctly assuming he wasn't going to be there. Then there was missing holidays, and first days of school, to the last days of school, and father daughter dances, birthdays, and everyday life in between. We became so out of sync that even talking on the phone to each other was a chore because while he was so busy living and providing outside of the house, there I was inside handling everything else. We were in such a routine to even notice anything wrong.
We spent many nights sleeping alone. Unless you count the dog and cat, which I demanded slept in bed with me. To the point that when we were under the same roof, we weren't sleeping in the same room. I know, it sounds awful, but honestly, we didn't know any better. We just didn't mesh well anymore. It was like being on one of those MTV reality shows like The Real World. Every time he would come back home, we were having to reintroduce ourselves to each other. It was awkward and frustrating. Being thrown into each others chaotic schedule.
So what changed?
Honestly, I don't even know at what point someone's foot went down and we said "enough is enough!" I do remember right around the time we made the decision to travel together full time, the kids would have panic attacks any time Tony went anywhere... and I mean anywhere. If he would go pick up dinner they would become hysterical thinking he was going to the airport and start to cry. As a mother, it was heartbreaking to watch.
I can sit back now, being on the road for about 4 months, and look back at just how lost we were and think "Who were those people?". It's easy to do...now. And don't get me wrong. We are a pretty typical couple. We still argue and disagree. And yes sometimes, he even has to fly out to places and be somewhere else time to time. But the difference now is, we are stronger than ever as a couple, because we have to be. Why, you may ask? Well to be frank, this lifestyle, choosing to live in such a small space, requires a lot of getting to know those around you that you live with. Here we were two practical strangers, who barely knew each other anymore, having to learn the ropes of a completely new radical lifestyle and do in all within 240 sq. ft. of living space. Which basically meant, if you wanted to argue and get pissed at one another, you could, but it's gonna be ridiculous to hold that grudge and then have to squeeze by them to get to the other room. or knock on the bathroom door and let them know you needed in there. What I'm trying to say is
living tiny has made our problems and our fights tiny.
We were and are able to talk about our disagreements face to face because we really have no other option. There is no spare room to go sleep in or other floor of the house to go disappear to and hold onto that hot coal of a grudge. When we clash, it's easier to talk out our differences faster which allows us more time to laugh it off and move on with our lives... together.
When we had our house, and separate lives, that's basically what it was. Two separate lives. There he was jet setting to all these places all over the country and sometimes the world while the rest of us were back at home doing our normal routines. And yes I'll admit, I resented his travel life. All the while not realizing that he was resenting mine. He wanted to be home. He wanted to be there, not missing milestones and holidays. Now we have both. We have a traveling life together, the four of us, full of milestones and holidays and family time.