My husband just spent 2 weeks in Malaysia on a business trip.
I've always thought of myself as a particularly independent person. However, the past weeks have shown me to be the exact opposite. My routine was shaken. I missed meals. I was repeatedly late to work (unheard of!) and gradually spiralled into a minor breakdown. Clearly, his absence had a profound effect on me. Sure, I may do my own thing and we're not joined at the hip, but I like to know that he's around all the same!
Obviously, I am not codependent in the technical sense of the word. Codependency is actually a negative, harmful trait, more in line with excessive preoccupation with the happiness of others and self-sacrificing in a way that can actually be destructive to the relationship. I'm not like that. I am too selfish and have far too much self-esteem to sacrifice myself on the altar of servitude. Yes, I am considerate of his needs and try to be a loving, generous wife. But I also expect as much in return. I put my needs first, and pursue my own life as a balanced individual. So I think I'm ok. Maybe, just maybe, it's just *love* that made me miss him. (Combined with an easily triggered lifelong mental instability that requires routine and stability, as well as somebody to talk to, which resulted in the aforementioned minor breakdown).
Bruce Cameron has some interesting theories on what makes a happy marriage:
If that's the case, we're heading in the right direction as I gradually shrink and DH slowly piles on the pounds.
But really, at the end of the day, I think a happy marriage is about wanting to be with the other person. That's what makes us willing to put the petty things behind us and choose to be happy together. Not sweat the small stuff. Support the other person. And if wanting to be together means I miss him when he's gone and get a bit crazy, then I don't think I should be complaining. There's worse things in this world than being in love.