We are on to part two of the Q&A from some Instagram questions I received a while back! Let's get right in there.
Q: How do you feel about your husband's music career and him traveling a lot?
A: When Tauren and I were dating, he was already traveling with his band Royal Tailor and they were about to be signed to a label. Tauren sat me down one night and told me I didn't want to marry him because he would be gone A LOT and we wouldn't have a "normal" family dynamic. It was a really emotional moment where I told him that I didn't want normal, I just wanted him. AWWWWW! LOL. I tell you that to say, we started our relationship with him traveling, so I already knew what I was getting myself into.
When we got home from our honeymoon, he left for tour for 5 weeks. That was the longest he's ever been away. After that stretch, we promised that we would never be apart for that long again. Before we had children, it was difficult for him to be away, but it definitely got more challenging once we had our kids. I had to create a new "normal" in my mind of what our family time would look like. Tauren would come home from tour and need to rest, but I was needing a break from working full-time and taking care of the kids and our home. It took a lot of discussions (arguments) and marriage counseling to figure out how to balance that. I can talk about that more in another post. 8 years later, his schedule is more manageable and he can afford to fly home every week of a tour at least for a couple of days to be with us.
I love what my husband does mainly because it's what he was born to do and what he is called to do in this season. His talent and dedication amazes me. I'm proud of him and his accomplishments. There are exciting things about Tauren being a Christian artist; going to the shows, hearing his songs on the radio, and meeting a lot of people, but there are also many challenges and obstacles that come with it. We are learning and growing and at the end of the day, the pros outweigh the cons, in my opinion.
Q: How do you manage raising 3 kids when your husband is away and what are some of the struggles that come with being a traveling musician's wife?
A: I would first say that God gives you grace for your circumstances. Have you ever looked at someone's situation and said, "how are they handling that? I couldn't do that"? Different people can handle different things depending on what God has called them and graced them to do. When I look back at the short amount of time that I was working full-time with 3 kids while my husband was traveling, I feel amazed that I was able to do all of that and hold it together.
It's very challenging to have a husband that travels a lot, but it is also really awesome when he is home, because we have him most of the day, every day. One of the challenges is keeping the right perspective. When we first had kids, I would feel angry sometimes and almost blame him for leaving us alone. It's kind of ridiculous to feel that way when your husband is just doing his job, but it's a feeling you have to work through. This is the life I chose and I knew what his job entailed. Sounds simple, but the one thing I HAVE to do to keep the right perspective every day is to read my Bible and pray. I always leave my time with God knowing what my role is and what my perspective should be. Another thing we do often is marriage counseling. I mentioned that above, but I believe EVERY married couple should have regular marriage counseling. We all come into our marriage with baggage of some kind. We have to have help to work through our issues. I encourage you to try it if you haven't already. You will be amazed at how much better your marriage can be if you get help and have the right attitude about fixing YOURSELF!
Another challenge I have is just getting much needed breaks. When Tauren gets home he needs to rest, but I also need a break. Like I said earlier, we have talked through this and figured out ways to meet in the middle on this. We are still learning each other's needs, but it gets better all the time, because we are dedicated to trying our best to meet those needs and we are both determined to grow personally.
We also try to take time for just us as a couple. Even though Tauren isn't home much during tour season, we take one night that he is home and go out on a date. This is very important for us. We have to keep our marriage as a top priority or the time apart can be detrimental. We can't be a strong family if we aren't a strong couple.
I will also add in that the most important things you can have are trust, patience, and communication.
1. We have to trust each other and the way we do that is through transparency and honesty. We have all of each other's logins and we are open about our needs and struggles.
2. We have to be patient. It's frustrating for me sometimes because I can't get a hold of Tauren when I need him. He's in a soundcheck or he's in a different time zone so he's sleeping. I have learned to be patient and wait for a good time for him to talk.
3. We have to communicate. It's so easy to let a day go by without talking because we are so busy. There are times that I'm going to bed and his concert isn't even over yet. We have to make time to talk and we have to talk about what's bothering us or when we are struggling. It's difficult for men to be transparent about their feelings, but it's also important for them to talk about their feelings when they are away.
I have many more questions I want to answer, so get ready for Part 3 in the near future! =)
Lean in to life. It's messy, but beautiful.