Meet Dana: Dana is a newlywed who is a traveling consultant. She is guest blogging for 2 weeks and giving us a peek into what it is like to be the one away from home.
Every Monday morning my alarm goes off at 4:30am, I get on the first flight out of Chicago and head to my client’s office, whether it be a short hour long flight to Detroit or a long five hour flight to L.A. For four days each week my client treats me to an overpriced Starbucks skinny vanilla latte in the morning and a nice four or five star dinner at night. I walk into the hotel, I’m welcomed back and told how much I am appreciated as a Platinum Rewards member. In my room, the maid has provided turn down service, leaving behind some chocolates on my pillow, and fresh towels in the bathroom. I turn on the T.V. to watch whatever I want, not worrying about making compromises with my husband on the night’s selection.
Thursday evening when I land, my husband greets me at the airport and we have dinner at our favorite neighborhood restaurant and recap our week with each other. When we arrive home, my husband shows me how he did the laundry and cleaned up (well really “picked up” since that’s as close as he gets to “cleaning”).
Sounds like I must be living a dream right? I thought so too the first few months we were together and I travelled but the excitement of travelling soon wore off and reality started to creep in. When I left Monday morning, I left behind an apartment littered with clothes worn over the weekend, take out containers scattered across the kitchen counter and a pile of unopened mail. My workload intensified, we now worked long hours and my husband and I were in different time zones. When I returned to my hotel, he was already out with friends. I’d be asleep before he came home and at work before he woke up.
There were decisions we needed to make together that were difficult to make not being in the same town or on the same schedule. I was missing spending time with my friends as well. With only the weekends to get together, it would sometimes be months before I’d see some friends.
On Thursday when I arrived home, I was stressed and overtired from the week’s workload, which was further intensified with the general chaos of the rental car facility and airport security. So of course, my poor husband receives the brunt of it when he picks me up at the airport and explains he’s been busy all week and didn’t have time to clean up. I had envisioned coming home and relaxing, clearing my head of the stress and chaos of the week but instead, I walked into what I perceived as more chaos. The house had to be cleaned, laundry had piled up, the mail had to be sorted, bills to pay, appointments to make, calls to return.
After sweeping through the house until it sparkled like a Mr. Clean commercial while my husband relaxed on the couch waiting for me to calm down, we talked. He explained his equally busy work week followed by the hockeygame Monday, pool with the boys Tuesday and helping his dad on Wednesday. But to me, the after work tasks didn’t seem to take priority over cleaning the house.
What I later realized is that I didn’t really care about the house being clean but I was stressed from the work week, wishing I was able to hang out with my friends and family rather than spending time alone in the hotel and also feeling guilty that I was upset with him knowing it was really the stress and loneliness of travelling that had been upsetting me.
So what do we do to avoid this the next week, since local companies weren’t banging down my door to offer me a job and I really did enjoy the luxuries of being a frequent traveler?
Join Dana next week as she gives us her tips and tricks for making the traveling life work!