Hubs and I have been separated now for nearly 3 weeks.
The first week was FANTASTIC! Better than I could have expected, even! Things were super amicable, we were talking reasonably and working together for our kids. He even came over and helped set up their beds and a washer and dryer in my new rental. Really went above and beyond. Things were great!
Week 2 was not as good. I think reality set in a bit and hubs had taken it kind of hard. Obviously, a separation is not easy for anyone. But I had the kids a bunch that week and he wasn’t coming over to help with things anymore, so I think it just kind of hit him that this is the new reality now. And he had a tough time coping with it.
So here we are in Week 3 and I was just informed that he’s got a job interview out-of-state in mid-October. If he lands the position, he will be moving by mid-to-late November for an early December start date.
Talk about absolute SHOCK.
Now…..I don’t want to rush to freak-out mode when nothing has been determined (no job offer yet at this point, no certainties of any type). But the fact that he’s even LOOKING for employment out-of-state totally caught me off guard. That is NOT what I’d expected to happen.
Meanwhile, I’m very much in Arizona. I signed a non-compete agreement for 3 years that I’m only 1 year into at this point. So I cannot even entertain the idea of looking for outside work. And I may end up in this state, totally alone, to raise two young kids on my own.
I mean…….screw what I said above. Cue: FREAKOUT!!!!!
Enter: lots of yoga and meditation; running and breath-work. And therapy???? I’d been going to therapy for a long time and stopped because – well, life – but I think I probably need to head back again.
SOOOOOOO much uncertainty right now. And the unpredictability is the WORST! I’ve had so many friends and family members ask about our holiday plans – offering the chance to do Thanksgiving together or trying to make plans to see each other over Christmas, etc. My response has always been the same: “Listen……we’ve literally only figured out the month of September. I’ll let you know when the timeline extends beyond that.”
It is very challenging planning for a future that is THIS uncertain. I mean, I’m a “single mom” either way. But having a supportive co-parent in the area is 100% night-and-day different than literally being the SOLE parent. So far, our plan has been to share “possession” of the children (I hate that term, but that’s what lawyers use). We’ve been alternating weeks where I have them for either 4 or 5 days and he has them for 2 or 3 days. But we’d been amicable! We’ve already helped each other out a couple times – he picked them up from school one afternoon when I had a late faculty meeting. I kept them later one afternoon when he had some extra clients at work. Things had been great! I honestly do NOT know how I will do it all alone. The thought is so scary and overwhelming right now.
Shoutout to my Mom friends! In sharing this shocking news at a recent playdate, a couple of my friends totally jumped to my aid with offers to help with childcare, to let me drop the kids if I needed (even just to go grocery shopping or take an hour nap!), to help with back-up/emergency care in case of illness, etc. I’ve always been a pretty self-sufficient person and I HATE to feel like a burden to others. But if hubs moves……well, I just don’t see any way around it. It takes a village, right? I don’t know how/if I could do it alone. But….I really don’t have a choice.
My question is, how might this unsettling news impact your advice and suggestions for moving forward. In my budget, I’ve only been planning $200/month for an EF. But now it feels like I need to really stop any/all extra debt payments and stockpile money for an uncertain future. Hubs is living in the house we own and the plan was for him to stay there and help fix it up and pay the bills until it sells. If he ends up just taking off, I’ll be stuck with paying all bills for TWO homes until it sells (and meanwhile…..no “fixing up” has even started yet…)