The World Beyond Your SchoolJan 02, 2019
Have you ever, even if for a few seconds felt being a school owner would all be so much easier if you were single?
If there wasn’t someone waiting for you to have dinner with them and nudging you to close and go home, or turn off the laptop or put down your phone.
It might sound insane, but I have. Don’t get me wrong; I have been in a loving relationship for five years. We have the strongest bond I have ever experienced. Yet it dawned on me recently, that I didn’t value it enough.
In the middle of my most successful year ever, I felt so lonely as I couldn’t find the way and the energy to connect with the person I love the most. We were living as if we were room-mates, rather than as a couple.
It got to a point where I accepted it as “normal”. Normal for a couple running two separate businesses. Normal for being in the process of building new products. Normal for a year where we both focus on professional growth. Taking for granted, that next year there will be more time for each other. Or the year after. Or someday, when we both have gotten to be successful enough with each business to be able to sit back and enjoy time together.
But what if there’s no next year? Or what if, after having lived through years of hard work and tears, after having stuck together in the hardest times, when we finally get the desired success, we are two strangers?
Two months ago, we had our usual Wednesday dinner with my love at a pub right next to our house. I went on and on talking about my school, my teachers, my students, their families, and all the things I still had to get done that week. I talked about how grateful I was to everybody for helping me with the move, being there to support, and how great of an idea it was to invite all my teachers for a massage so that everyone can relax and get new energies for the school year ahead.
Then he asked me whether I had thought of doing something for him, with him. Up until then, he did all my bookkeeping, my taxes, he gives me legal and administrative advice when it comes to paperwork with the school. He is my “local” help, given that I have only lived five years in the country. He is the one who listens to me on good days and bad days; he is there to give me fresh energy when I’m down. He is even the one who makes sure I eat well when I’m too busy to cook. It didn’t occur to me to thank him, not even to share some time with him when it’s not all about the school. I took it all for granted.
At that night though, it hit me. And I did not try to explain or fight back. I was so exhausted that I stopped thinking and looking for arguments proving I was doing it right. I just surrendered. I listened carefully to every word he said. He wanted me back. He wanted my time. For him. For our family. For our new home we moved into a year ago, but yet it didn’t feel like a real home. We still had boxes here and there, photos and paintings in the garage, waiting for us to find a place for them. The dream house we desired, but still hadn’t found the time to turn it into a family home. We were too busy hustling. We had been joking for months about the fact that we both had more sex being single than since we had been together. Which in the end is not that funny…
I had cried for days, thinking it might be the end of our story together. Then we kept on talking and listening to each other deeply each day. After a few days, I made a pledge to myself, which I have successfully kept since. I pledged to do one thing per week for my family, for him, for our home or myself — only one thing, taking baby steps. But one thing each week adds up to 52 things a year. That doesn’t sound bad at all. Since then our house has been getting in shape, it is now turning into a real home. We have gone on the best family trip for years in November and had the coolest NYE party with our big family in our home.
Giving more focus to these areas also allowed me to see my school with different eyes. I can’t describe how much more centered I am at work, and I couldn’t feel more grateful for this wake-up call. I’m finally back to making slick and confident decisions; I have the steering wheel again. Rather than being reactive, I am proactive, and clients are much happier too. I know I have not found a magic wand. But I have found something that hopefully, little by little can help hold it together.
Has something like this ever happen to you?
How did you make work it out?
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