A question that we regularly get asked is ‘what is it like being together 24 hours a day?’ So many people appear to be intrigued as to how we manage to be together for virtually every minute of every day. We have been asked the same question in New York, in Melbourne, in Belfast and even in Waianakurua right at the bottom of south island New Zealand.
We have met so many wonderful people over the past three years and more often than not we end up discussing our nomadic existence and how we manage our lives. The most common response that we get, in fact we’ve had it countless times, is when one half of a couple we are talking to says:
There is no way I could live with him for 24 hours a day! We’d end up killing each other!
Now I could easily swap the him for her as it has come from both sides but the majority of couples we have met claim that they just could not stand being together all of the time. Their relationships are fine, they obviously love each other, but they all say that they just wouldn’t survive without some time apart from each other. So obviously they are both surprised and inquisitive about how we manage it.
There are so many cliches that I could throw at you now such as ‘we were made for each other‘ and ‘we’re soul mates‘ but the truth is probably far less romantic. A successful relationship where you are never apart takes a fair amount of hard work.
In our experience the toughest part of your married life is when children come along and you change from a loving couple into loving parents. It’s not that you feel any less for each other it’s just that the children rightly become your priority. Then many years later they spread their wings and go off to start their own lives leaving you behind as a couple of empty-nesters (I hate that phrase even though it describes the situation pretty well). That’s when you turn to look at each other and start to appreciate how much you have both changed over those years. This can be a critical moment that many couples just can’t get over.
Now it may be good fortune or it could be hard work but I suspect it’s a combination of the two that re-ignite the flames and return your relationship to how it was when you first met. It wasn’t hard for either of us though to rediscover why we fell for each other all those years ago.
Our whole JWalking experience could never have got past first base if we weren’t completely together and the key to our continuing successful lifestyle is undoubtedly that we just love being with each other. We listen when the other has something to say and we actually talk to each other all of the time. We both have things that we are particularly good at and trust each other implicitly when one of other of us makes a decision.
Jo is great booking accommodation whereas I tend to arrange flights and train journeys. She handles the day to day money while I look after the long-term budget. I take responsibility for all of the electronic devices where she sorts out toiletries and medicines. Oh and it’s probably not great that Jo always cooks but I do all of the washing up.
We aren’t identical though as we like different films, prefer different types of music, go for different books, have different interests, like some different foods. It’s all about give and take and compromise like any relationship and life would probably be a little dull if we were exactly the same.
So that’s how we manage to be together for 24 hours a day, seven days a week. It isn’t difficult, in fact we don’t even think about it. In all honesty, whenever we are apart for a day or more I am completely lost without her. Absolutely hopeless.
Perhaps we were made for each other?