The journey toward full intimacy in my marriage has required me to knock down the walls I had erected to protect my heart. Opening myself up to the joy that was waiting for me in marriage meant risking heartache and sadness.

I am all packed to go to She Speaks. I have a bit more to do on a writing project before I leave, and I haven’t packed up my knitting yet, but I am otherwise ready to go. (That’s a good thing, seeing as how I need to leave at 4 am to get to the airport.)

I’ve always been excited to go to conferences. The time away from my normal routine to focus and dig into meaningful work has always provided new energy and inspiration for me.

This conference is special because it relates to my faith and ministry. It reaches into a part of me that my higher education conferences rarely even tapped.

It is exciting and overwhelming to think about being surrounded by so many other women doing God’s work. I am a bit intimidated to think about seeing all the wonderful things other women are doing in ministry as I am very aware of areas where I struggle.

My heart is full of gratitude for the funding and prayers of people who want to support my growth. Truly, I have had several on-my-knees, tearful “I’m not worthy” moments over the past week and a half.

I am thrilled about this conference and about the people I will finally get to meet in person. I know I will come away inspired, even though it may be a while before I can transform that inspiration into something productive and visible.

Still . .

Five days is a long time to be gone from my husband.

It wasn’t always that way, though. Ten years ago I was gone for five days on a business trip, and that was an entirely different experience. I was struck by the contrast as I finished packing this morning.

Then . . .

  • I was thrilled to have five days off from sexual requests.
  • I didn’t expect to miss my husband at all (and I didn’t).
  • I packed my pretty nightgown because it made me feel good and I knew it wouldn’t encourage him to think I might be interested in sex.
  • I knew I would sleep better away from my husband (and I did).
  • I was relieved that a full conference schedule would give me an excuse for a complete break from my husband for a few days.
  • I was excited to get to go to a new place by myself.

Now . . .

  • I am sad that I will have five days with no sexual contact at all.
  • I already miss my husband. I need him in my life, and I hate when we’re apart.
  • I had to search for some pajamas, as I’m pretty sure Bonny doesn’t want to see me in what I usually wear to bed these days. 😉
  • I know I won’t sleep as well without my favorite live teddy bear to hold onto.
  • I am concerned that a full conference schedule won’t give me enough time to call my husband and hear his voice.
  • I am sad that I won’t get to share this new place with my husband.

I packed with the same excitement I’ve always had when getting ready for a conference. I didn’t expect that excitement to be flavored with sadness.

The sadness I feel inside my excitement brings me such joy.

I don’t like feeling sad. I don’t like missing my husband. The fact that I can feel this sadness, however, is a sign that my walls are down and that I have truly and fully opened my heart to my husband.

As much as I am ready to go, I know that I will be even more ready to come home to my man.

I’ll miss you, Big Guy. <3 And I can’t tell you how happy that makes me.

8 Thoughts on “Five Days and Ten Years

  1. I can really relate to this post. I recently went away without my dear husband and I missed him so much. Back when we were married the first time that I would have wanted to be gone longer. This time I couldn’t wait to get home, though I had a fabulous time while I was there. Such a wonderful change.

    By the way, you are worthy!!! You are daughter of the King and that makes you worthy of all the blessings He provides. Enjoy your trip, friend and enjoy your homecoming just as much!

    • The contrast is astonishing when I actually see it. I am no more and no less worthy than any other woman. I do intend to enjoy both the conference and the homecoming!

  2. IntimacySeeker on July 22, 2014 at 12:40 pm said:

    I’ve been thinking about you today and sharing your excitement. I identify with missing your husband. I used to long for solitude and the only time I felt I could relax in my own home was when hubby was away. Now I long for him when we are apart. Even with my many struggles, I have been surprised by this growth in our relationship.
    Thanks for sharing with us! We are with you in spirit!!!

  3. Simply… Awesome!

    I loved the “then and now” comparison you did. If my wife and I were to do a similar comparison between our past and present lives, I’d be willing to bet they’d look much like yours.

    I am really glad you’re getting to go to this conference, as I’m certain the tools you gain will enhance your already great marriage ministry. It blesses me to know that there are so many people willing and ABLE to help you get there too! That’s just fantastic! Early this year I wanted to send Tiffani, but we quickly realized that we just are not financially able at this point in life.

    Go. Get taught. Get blessed. Get photographic evidence that you, Bonny and Gaye are not really virtual avatars. And get home to your man.

    I bet he’s gonna miss you too.


    • Oh, how I would love to have met Tiffani. We are definitely not able to do this financially right now, and I wasn’t sure that crowdfunding would work–but it did, and I am so grateful.

  4. Lori Byerly on July 24, 2014 at 3:35 pm said:

    Have fun! (and tell us all about it when you get back)

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