Monday, June 27, 2011

My experience of my wife being in Africa

Love is composed of a single soul inhabiting two bodies.

I have been thinking of doing a post about my own thoughts and feelings about my wife being in Africa, but have held off up to this point.  I suppose it as not for any reason in particular that I have not written something, but there were multiple times that I thought about posting and have not done so.

Over the past 4 weeks, my wife has been volunteering in Kenya, Africa, and has 1 more week to volunteer until she will be home.  Her volunteer experience has left me with an experience of my own, namely, being home alone for the duration of her trip.  I am not alone in the truest sense of the word, certainly nothing like Tom Hanks experienced in his movie, The Castaway.  I have spent a lot of time with my family, and even went on vacation with my in-laws, however I am alone in the sense that my wife, my partner, is not with me.  I will be the first to admit, I did not think it would be this hard, after all, during the dating, courtship, and some of the engagement to my wife, we were in two different states at two different colleges and only saw each other for one weekend every 6-8 weeks.  Those were certainly tough times, where we missed each other greatly, but it was doable.

The experience I am now having is nothing like what was experienced in college.  This is much worse.

I do not want to give the impression that I am not happy that my wife decided to do volunteer work in Kenya, on the contrary I am extremely proud of her and happy that she decided to do such a thing.  However I miss her an unbelievable amount.  The only saving grace is that I am able to either talk or text with her almost every day.

For the past two years I have spent nearly every single day with her,  went to bed next to her, woke up to her every morning, and had a companion to come home to every day.  When you have that for two years, and then suddenly it is no longer there, it has a slightly disorienting effect.  Insomnia set in almost immediately.  I was simply unable to go to bed at a reasonable time without forcing myself, and then I was unable to stay asleep for any decent amount of time.  Undoubtedly, my body was used to sleeping next to my wife and has had a very hard time adapting; 4 weeks later I am still not sleeping well.  I was definitely not expecting this, and it does not seem like something I am able to help at this point.  The only cure will be when my wife comes home next weekend,  and I suspect that will be my first good night's sleep.

You often hear of elderly married couples dying around the same time.  Often times, one of the individuals will pass on, and the companion passes away shortly after.  I completely understand this phenomenon at this point, as I could not imagine these past 4 weeks lasting the rest of my life.  Losing the love of your life for the entirety of your life would be absolutely soul crushing and probably not something I could bear, barring dependent children.

Indeed, Ashley is the love of my life and I miss her.

There is a story in philosophy readings that discusses the creation of the human soul.  In essence it says that the humans were once beings that were essentially double what we are now.  4 legs, 4 arms, two heads, 1 soul and each half was facing a different direction.  Eventually the two halves were not content being together and bickered about which way to go.  In order to solve this problem the ancient gods separated the two halves and allowed them to go their own way.  The separation created two complementary halves of the human/soul,  literally creating the other souls mate.  This was great for the halves at first, they were free to go where they pleased without thought of pleasing the other, however this began to wear on them, and they eventually missed their other half.  The separation became so unbearable and they began to search for their souls mate, only becoming whole and happy again when they found their soul mate.

Ashley is my soul mate, and we are currently two halves separated from each other.  Needless to say, I am extremely excited for her to come home from Kenya.

Until then, I am going to try to get some sleep, and maybe see if I can teach Samuel the Cat to speak.


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