Being married to someone who is gone half the time is hard. It isn’t just the 24 hour shifts, it’s so much more than that.
The kids get away with more when they are home with just me and they both know it. I’m not as strict and understand that kids are kids and need to be allowed to be kids sometimes. The FF hasn’t ever really been around kids, other than ours, and sometimes expects them to be well-mannered, seen but not heard, mini people. Now, those of us that are around kids often, know that they are FULL of life and sometimes it just can’t be tamed. Plus he is so used to quiet, the kid rambunctiousness is a bit much sometimes. I don’t let them do as they please, they do have to remember manners and act civilized, but I am lenient.
It can be a tough transition to be the boss of the house, and then the real boss comes in giving orders. I don’t always do so well with him coming home and putting on the pants! I get to be mommy and daddy, take care of home repairs and make decisions, then when he comes home I lose my in charge status. Some days I don’t mind giving up my powers, but some days I go down fighting. 🙂
When my FF is gone, I put the kids in bed at appropriate time and lock the house down. I proceed to my room where I usually stay up past my bedtime, ogling the millions of things on Pinterest or stalking train wrecks on Facebook. I know, I should really calm down, I lead such an exciting life! It is quiet, no one is talking to me or bothering me whatsoever. Not that my husband bothers me, I much prefer for him to be home, BUT… I never get quiet ME time unless everyone is asleep and he is working. When he is home, he likes me to spend time with him. Come outside with him. Come watch Miami Vice, The A-Team or something that’s gonna make me cry, with him. Come sit with me. SO, I can’t complain that he doesn’t love me enough or doesn’t spend any time with me, but I have chores to do too lol.
I like when my husband works his normal full-time job. ONE 24 on, then 48 OFF. That one day is wonderful. I think the time apart is what keeps us so happy with each other. It keeps me sane. He has time that no one bothers him, unless there is a call. He works a one man station, so unless he goes to HQ, he doesn’t see anyone else. One 24 hour shift is perfect. Now when the part-time jobs start calling, and they usually will, and a 24 turns into two or three in a row, I get a little frazzled. This is when we both get stressed and snappy. Being open is a good thing. I let him know he is being the hole in an A and he lets me know that I’m being a, the thing men call women when they aren’t happy with them. The best part is if we do get mad, it lasts only 5 minutes before we’re over it. I can’t stay mad, and that makes me mad!
Sometimes it takes a day for us all to fit back in, just in time for the next shift. Sometimes I wonder if a lot of Fire Families feel like this.
Until next time.