Every August, my husband and I celebrate our friendiversary — the month we met and became friends during college. I had just gotten back into town for classes and was starting my senior year of college; he was a sophomore working behind the register at Chick-fil-A and took my order. It would be fun to say it was love at first sight, but our love grew over the next six months while we developed a deep friendship. He was the best and most loyal friend I had ever had, and he continues to be that to me. We have now been together for 18 years (which is one year shy of half his life).
Last month, we were able to spend three days on our own in Charleston, SC. It was truly an amazing time just the two of us. We haven’t been alone on a trip without our kids in the last four years.
In these last four years, we’ve been dealing with the ramifications of a job loss, a big move, a new baby, caring for an ailing parent and the loss of a parent, health challenges of our own, depression, anxiety and one big word: trauma. Not to mention the global pandemic that has caused stress and job insecurity as well as isolation, as we’ve had to navigate living life without trips to see family and friends.
We have had no space, and honestly no desire for a trip just the two of us.
Talk to any married couple and I’m sure they would tell you that it is worth the cost to take a trip away with your spouse; to get away from the pressures of daily life and to reconnect with each other. They might tell you that your marriage needs this time away and that you owe it to one another to make a vacation work in your busy schedules.
I 10/10 recommend a trip away without your kids, but if you (like us for the last four years) can’t take a trip without your kids, then 10/10 I recommend spending your money on therapy instead. Because while vacations are great, they’re not real life.
Therapy > vacations (in my humblest opinion).
We have both spent intentional time in therapy, walking towards health and each other. It has been hard, sad work at times, but it has helped us reconnect and stay best friends in such a stressful and uncertain time. Therapy can make real life more enjoyable; it can give you tools to make life manageable; it can help you cope and survive big T and little t trauma; it can make your marriage healthier and more fun.
Therapy isn’t as Instagram pretty as a sunrise walk on the beach, but it is truly more beautiful.
Therapy can save your marriage. It did ours.