“His colleagues become family & his true family becomes strangers”
Tracey’s View: This was the first thing I faced when Jake started his Residency. Almost every week, including most weekends, Jake would work long hours. In the first two years, I rarely saw him, which made me grow as an independent person. Independence is something you learn, and I’m not talking overnight. It took me years before I could be satisfied with being home alone, even nights at a time. I made it work because when I didn’t, it resulted in arguments, and frankly, having arguments didn’t bend his schedule with flexibility and free time. I learned to accept that if I am going to be with this man, then I need to understand his life and love mine. The saying, ‘love yourself then someone will love’ you couldn’t be more than true.
Jake’s View: You work a ton, so the key to making a relationship work is about balance. Know the balance between work and your personal life. Know that work comes second and family first, but only when time permits.
Tracey used to wake up with me in the beginning stages of our relationship to make me coffee, but then she realized that sleep was more important. She says it’s healthier, but I like to argue that studies have shown coffee to be healthier. Coffee is a staple to making it through your day, especially residency.
REAL AS IT GETS – A typical week would like for us when Jake was in residency.
Monday: Jake wakes up at 4:30 AM and is out the door at 5 AM. I woke up later and had breakfast alone. We both work during the day, but I left work at 5 PM and got home at 6 PM. I would eat dinner alone (or, wait, and then become hangry). Jake would get home anywhere from 7:30 PM to 8:30 PM (sometimes later). By the time Jake got home, he had to do this or that for work, and they are no options because he needed to get it done. Usually, I would greet him when he got home and then send him off to the study. I would go back to doing this and that and get ready for bed. Most times, when he was home, he still isn’t done working. He would be annoyed, tired and I would get angry, so I went to bed, alone.
Repeat Tuesday through Friday.
Saturday and Sundays: Jake wakes up early and goes into the hospital at 6 AM, and I’m most likely still in bed. Most mornings, I am alone, as Jake is at work until noon or early afternoon. On the worst days, he’s at work until the evening. I did my own thing and tried to understand, it’s the job, the lifestyle he chose, and I chose (because I chose to be with him).
Mutal Tip: Being independent and know how to balance work and personal life. If you don’t know how to love yourself and be alone some nights, then your relationship might not succeed. If you don’t know how to balance your work life with your family life, then your relationship might not succeed.
Do you feel that your partner (who is the medical profession) is never home since they started Residency? I love to hear your stories, and if you have tips/advice!
Leave a comment below!