Almost exactly one year and four months ago, my husband was laid off from the company where he'd worked for fourteen years.
It was a scary time. We didn't know what the future would hold, but we were pretty sure of one thing: when he found a job, it wouldn't be in town.
He had worked only two or three miles away from home, but in the small town where we live, jobs in his field are hard to come by. While we were anxious for him to find work, we took advantage of the extra family time we had, because chances were good that he'd find a job that kept him away from home.
In the end, that's exactly what happened. My husband found a good job with a great company - that was nearly an hour away. One way. We were so happy that we didn't think too much about the distance. He started work just before Christmas, heading out the door early each morning in suit and tie, and we were thrilled to return to 'normal.'
Except normal it wasn't. Shortly after Christmas he headed off for training - nearly an hour and a half away - one way. After six weeks of driving three hours each day, returning home in time to eat a quick dinner and fall in bed, exhausted, only to do it all over again the next day, we agreed that the next time a training session arose he would stay in the city and not commute.
That made life easier on him, but we sure missed him! He's been in training for a wide variety of things over the past year, and even when he's home, he's putting in nearly twelve hour days when you factor in the commute.
Until now. Last week he transferred to an office in our tiny little town. His office is now only two miles from our house - AND he gets an hour lunch break, during which time he comes home and eats with us.
We've gone from seeing him only over the dinner table - when he was in town - to having him move easily in and out of our daily schedule. It's GREAT!
Over the past week, we've returned to our new-and-improved normal. My husband is home to help with kiddie shower time again. We drive to kiddie sporting events as a family instead of meeting up there. He's home to listen to the kids' excitement over school projects, to greet their book club friends when they come over each month, and to talk with me before and after work.
We are incredibly thankful that he has a job. We realize that many people don't. But we're also very, very thankful to have him working back in town. Without the commuting time, we have more time as a family to bond, volunteer, learn, work, and play together.
I love that.
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