Survival Mode When Your Spouse Leaves Sacramento

survival mode

Being left to one’s own devices means to shift into survival mode.

The first night my husband had left Sacramento, I was in a for rude awakening. He flew to Nevada last week for an extended Boys Weekend, hiking with old friends from college. It was a hectic night because I had to completely take care of myself, go into survival mode, which first meant choosing among the meals my husband had so thoughtfully prepared and left in the refrigerator for me. That was a huge responsibility in itself because I was really hungry. Too many choices. Now I had to weigh every choice. Standing in front of the refrigerator with the door open, listening to it chime over and over because I held it open too long and the alarm went off, shoving tupperware dishes around because I was NOT gonna do what he predicted which was eat beef stew every night.

But that would prove to be a fairly accurate prediction as the days went by. I am used to my husband placing dinner in front of my face without me having to make any choices. My typical 12-hour work day as a Sacramento Realtor isn’t over until 7 PM, when I turn off my electronic devices to pay attention to my husband and the cats. There is no survival mode for me after 7 PM.

Even easier than heating up beef stew that first night was dumping the remains of several containers of leftover Thai food into one big dish and into the microwave with it. Left to my own devices, hey, I can shift into survival mode. Yet that wasn’t the worst part. The worst part came when my Netflix movie was over and I was ready to retire for the evening. That was the big shock.

I could not simply lift my body from the sofa, wander sleepily into the bedroom and hit the bed. Uh, uh. There was nobody else here to turn everything off. No shuffling off to the master suite in a dreamy state for me.

I could not leave the DVD player on, the television or our control box, so I had to dig out those remotes from the cushions and figure out how to work the “off” buttons. Then, I needed to check all of the exterior doors to the house and make sure they were locked, in addition to turning off every light switch. Heat off, check. Coffee pot set, check. Litter boxes empty, check. No cats locked in closets, check. By the time I eventually hit the bed, my eyeballs were wide open, staring at the ceiling fan. This is what survival mode felt like.

This experience gave me a heightened appreciation for some of the things my husband contributes to our household.

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