Traveling Without Your Partner
Jermaine and I share a serious love for food and travel. Those are 2 important things that brought us together when we first started dating. We love to travel and explore the world together and I have to say that's also been one of the things to bring us closer together by traveling both together and apart. I have always had wanderlust and in previous dating situations, I pushed aside or postponed travel because it didn’t fit into the other persons priority at the time.
As I got older, I vowed to myself to always live for myself first and never push things that are important to me to the side again.
We both have busy schedules, especially with friend's birthdays and weddings and the commitments that come with that, so sometimes our schedules do not always align where we are able to take every vacation together. Other times, we simply just want to travel with our girl or guy friends and do something unique to our relationships with them. For example, later this year he is taking a week long trip to Croatia on a yacht (I DON'T DO SMALL BOATS FOR THAT LONG) or right now I'm on a layover in Amsterdam headed to Ghana with my girls and sometimes stuff like this may not include one another.
As much as we are partners, we are and will always be individuals first!
To me, it’s always important that we have our combined life we are building with one another but also our lives apart because that's what initially brought us together. It helps keep our relationship fresh, exciting and we enjoy missing each other and anticipating the feeling of getting to see one another and share travel stories after some time apart.
Even though being away from your partner can be a bit scary and maybe even nerve wrecking, it's empowering to go out into the world on your own and do something for yourself too! You get to be on your own schedule, do all of the things you want to do and have some time of reflection away from your other half. I try to empower women to take at least one girls trip per year that gives them some time apart from their partner or kids and also lets them just feel like they can do anything on their own! Because... #GIRLPOWER
We try to do a few things that help with spending time apart and make us both feel a little more comfortable about taking our own time:
Communicate our intentions ahead of time. We share what we are thinking about doing as far in advance as possible so that the other is aware of what we are thinking about doing, who we are traveling with, how long we will be gone, etc so that we can plan our schedules accordingly.
Share a joint calendar. A while back we created a joint Google calendar that’s attached to both of our calendar phones. When we are looking to schedule trips or plan things, each of us can see what we have going on together or apart which helps us make adequate plans and not double book ourselves.
Discuss our joint travel goals. If there’s a place that I’d like Jermaine to reserve travel for me with, I’m very open about letting him know that so that we can save that place for the 2 of us. Later this year, he’s going on a week boating trip, I hate boats and Jermaine knows that. So that’s something that didn’t bother me to not be invited to or miss out on.
Spend serious quality time before leaving. Building up to our trips, we usually plan or do some really fun activities or a special day/night together just to enjoy the moments with just us before we leave. It helps send us off on a good note and gives us something to hold onto while gone.
Don't shame the other for wanting/needing some time apart. Everyone needs a little space every now and then and one thing we never try to do is shame the other for simply just needed a bit of space. I respect Jermaine's wishes on wanting to do certain things with his boys and I expect the same in return. We both value our friendships outside of our relationship and appreciate the balance we give one another.
Share moments with one another. While we don't spend the entire time apart texting, on the phone or on FaceTime (because that defeats the whole purpose, right?!) we do love to snap pics and videos and send them to one another while we are out and about on our journey. This helps us stay connected with one another and feel like we're in the highlighted moments of the trip!
I won't lie, because #transparency... right before I left for this trip, Jermaine and I had a really fun weekend then then a bit of an argument and it was so tough to leave on those terms. Before I took off, we had some make up words but in thinking about it, we hadn't argued in FOREVER and maybe it was a clear sign that this time apart is going to be really good for us. I love him so much and think it's so important to truly appreciate one another and just have some time on our own to just BE. When Jermaine and I meet back up we'll have lots to share and lots of love and making up to do, for sure!
So, don't be afraid to venture out and get that solo and friend time in. Cheers to living your best, most traveled life!