Have you ever dated someone that’s busier than you?
I’ve always been the busy one in the relationship. The one that’s constantly on the go and has a planner full of dates and places I need to be. Until now. Now I live in a new place, where I have FOUR friends and the guy I’m seeing is insanely busy…all of the time. He’s a paramedic for a hospital in Austin and works 3 12 hour shifts a week. On top of that, he’s picking up extra shifts, spending time with his family, getting settled into the apartment we just moved him into and is prepping for school to start next month.
My schedule compared to his, and compared to what it was in DC, is completely different than what I’m used to. Before I was working in an office 45-50 hours a week, lifting 4-5 times a week with my best girlfriends, was working at a yoga studio, while also practicing yoga a few times a week, and I had all of my friends to fill the rest of my open time with. Now, I work from home for those 45-50 hours a week, I practice yoga occasionally, go to bible study on Tuesday nights and spend time with the few friends I have. My life here is so quiet compared to the past few years of my life and I’m having to adjust to my significant other being busier than I am. It makes me feel like less of a priority, even though I know that’s the furthest thing from the truth. He does the best that he can with the extra time that he has, and I’m very grateful for that.
When he and I first started seeing each other he wasn’t nearly as busy as he is right now. He’d have a few days off a week and we’d spend them together downtown, or at a new restaurant, ect. That time together filled the quiet space that I would have been spending alone, without time to process all of the changes that have happened the last 6 weeks. Now that his calendar is filling back up, and the reality of my move is really sinking in, im finally truly processing everything. I realized this week that I’m not moving back to DC. That this isn’t a long vacation where I live somewhere else away from all my friends, like my trip to Africa. I was in Africa for 6 weeks, which is exactly how long I’ve been in Austin now. This is also the longest I’ve ever been away from everyone I love. And processing all of this is harder than I imagined.
So much has already happened in DC since I left. My best friend got engaged, AND married in less than 2 week period. My oldest and closest friend informed me that she’s pregnant with her first baby. Another close friend gave birth to her first child a few weeks after I moved. And my boss got promoted, which has shifted my whole team around. These are huge milestones that I wish I’d been in town for. Things I wish I could be more openly a part of, but now I can only do my best from a distance.
Surprisingly, I haven’t cried too much since I’ve been here. For anyone who knows me well, I can cry at almost the drop of a hat. I miss so many people and already feel a bit forgotten by those that I love so much. But staying in touch with someone who lives long distance is so hard and I was warned before my move that relationships would fizzle out. These are the people I’ve been crying for. Those that filled my time while I was in DC. The people I’d call when I had a free evening to grab drinks, dinner, catch a movie, do anything with.
All this quiet time alone is allowing me to breathe. And its taking me back to my yoga mat. I’ve been off my mat since my first week in Austin until yesterday. I decided it was time to turn Netflix off, get off the couch and do something I used to love so much. My first class back I was immediately reminded what it’s like to move with my breath and allow emotions to come up where they may. So far, the hour yoga classes I’ve taken are when I’ve felt the least homesick. The least depressed about how alone I’m feeling. But either way, homesick, depressed or unconditionally happy, my mat accepts me as I show up.
I took a very late class tonight, 8:30-9:30pm hoping that I would find comfort. Not only did I find that, I found a release in the stress I’ve been holding in. I found a love for my body I haven’t had in weeks and a longing to listen closer to what I need right now in my life.
Community is something that doesn’t happen over night. I had the unrealistic expectations set that I would move, immediately meet a ton of people, have an amazing schedule that I love and be beyond happy. Expectations are not reality. A move cross country is not an easy change, in fact it’s been very hard, and expecting it to be easy was ridiculous of me.
The depression I’m feeling is also very real. But locking myself in my house with my dog isn’t going to make Austin feel more like home. Through baby steps, and slowly adding more into my routine, hopefully I’m my happy, healthy self in no time. 🙂