One of the things about a traveling spouse is that there is a constant process of communication and figuring out how to do it better. As Dana pointed out the past two weeks honest communication can change the whole direction of your relationship.
My husband and I are still figuring this out but we have come a long way. Because of my husband’s particular job we cannot schedule in a phone call at the end of the day and we may go several days without actually speaking to each other (today would be Day 4 of that for us).
Even though I haven’t heard his voice I have been in contact with him. Here are three ways that have helped us!
Why we use Text: Text messages are easy. It is a great way to say I’m thinking about you, I miss you, I completed xyz task. It’s quick and you can do it from just about anywhere. On the receiving end my husband gets it immediately with little effort. We also don’t have to worry about the time when it comes to texting. If my husband has something to tell me at 5am he can and I will receive it when I wake up.
One of the downsides to texting is cost. Unless you have an unlimited text plan, counting texts can get a bit tedious. So that is why we Tweet.
Why we use Twitter: Twitter is free! My husband jumped on to this form of communication long before I did and he uses it more frequently than I do. Twitter is an internet based application so you do need access to use it. Twitter is great for pictures and updates. I started using it to post pictures of what the kids and I were doing or pinpoint where we were in the city. My husband did the same. He checks in at different destinations on his travel, we check them via Twitter and then we can map them out. It is a great why for us to literally “track” him and very useful for my son to see where his dad is at.
Twitter is great for simple pictures and locations but lacks depth, it is only 140 characters per message after all! When we have something truly extensive to say we type.
Why we Type: Emails! Often my husband gets into his destination very late at night and leaves very early in the morning. I often wake up to an email from him. Email allows us to send detailed pictures, notes, to do lists, attachments and carry on longer conversations. Again, it does require some kind of internet access but it also allows for a larger and more varied dialog. Looking at my email I see that most of our emails are for household planning (bills, events, etc.).
Of course, I would much prefer to talk to my husband but in 6 days he usually has about 4 hours where we might be able to connect. We are so thankful for the various technologies that allow us to stay connected at home and on the road.
The written word will never replace a spoken “I love you”. However, with the many days apart and life still moving , texting, tweeting and typing keep us connected at the most basic level.
Tell me: How do you stay connected to your traveling spouse?