However long you two have been together, you deserve to pat each other on the backs for hanging in there through all the ups and downs. Actually, better make that a massage. You've been through enough together that you're feeling it in your bones by now!
And this period could coincide with some doubts about the relationship. Should you stay together, or chase down some of that sweet independence you've been fantasizing about? If you stay together, should you keep things moving along as they have been, or lay new ground rules for communication? You both might start feeling a bit nervous about your future together, but try not to worry too much. Questioning your bond is a good thing; there's always room for improvement in the ways that you communicate, support each other and so on. An end to the status quo might seem like a scary prospect, but ultimately you'll both be glad of any changes you make during this period. Think of the next several months to a year as a test. If you can figure out a new way to relate to each other and to satisfy each other's needs within the relationship, then you can rest assured that your bond is strong indeed.