Friday, December 8, 2017

Cologne

Call me hypersensitive to scents and sounds. I hate the sound of people chewing loudly. I can't stand AM radio. It's Fall, so that means Steve is constantly listening to AM sports talk. This also means that Steve constantly leaves this on in the car. I curse every time I start the car and I hear that background crackle. I hate the smell of dry erase markers. I only wear Secret deodorant because it's the only scent that doesn't get to me. One scent I do like is cologne on a man. Always have.

Due to the unwritten cockpit rule of no cologne, Steve has become conditioned to not wear any. On special occasions, like date night or a dance, he will bust out his Polo Black. But, it's a rare treat.

The weekend after Thanksgiving, we invited friends over for a football game. One of which was Steve's friend. He is actually the inspiration for my book, by the way. His character's name is Jack Landon. At one point I asked Steve to take the trash out, since I was busy preparing food. Steve was happy to help, and so was Jack. Steve went for the trash, and Jack took care of the recycling. As Jack passed me, I picked up his scent. After all, it was tight quarters to squeeze three adults in a rather tight space between the island and side countertop. He smelled good. So good that I nearly nuzzled my nose into his neck. I told him how nice he smelled. Steve, then proceeded to mock me and nuzzle his nose into Jack's neck as well. Jackass. 

And just this last weekend I dropped Cici off at a birthday party. As I greeted the father, a good friend of ours, I noticed his cologne. Of course I did...I notice these things. I strayed from the party for about an hour since I had some errands to run. And during that hour I could smell his cologne on my sweatshirt. It was lovely.

So be it. I guess it just makes Steve's cologne all the more special when he wears it.

****

I take the lead when it comes to the kids.

Christmas gifts? I've been the one buying.
Doctor appointments? I'm the one that makes them. Now, I do try to schedule them on days where Steve can take them.
Playdates? Me.
School things, like after-school activities and projects? Me.
Of course Steve pitches in when he can, but with as much as he is gone I take the lead most of the time. I'm used to doing this by now. It's my role, and I accept it.

But, every now and again, it gets to me. Doing everything all the time just gets to me.

It used to be that Steve would put the kids "down" at night when he was home, but now that they are older the dynamic has changed. They take showers independently, get dressed themselves, and brush their teeth on their own. It's typical that I'm upstairs in my bathroom getting ready for bed at the same time - contacts out, face washed, pjs on. This translate that I'm the one helping out with the kids nearly every night.

As I just stated, I accept my role. But, I have to tell you, there are times when my role just wears on me...and wears on me...and wears on me...and then I break. Like when I feel like I am the only one helping the kids with bedtime, even when Steve is home. Some may call our evenings routine, and they may be. But, sometimes something hits me just right, and I need to break that routine.

I broke this weekend. At one point during bedtime duties, when the kids were screwing around and not doing what they should have been doing, Steve commented something to me about their behavior. I took it as a personal jab, as if he was criticizing my parenting because the kids weren't doing what they were supposed to be doing. I think my response was something like, "well, do something about it!" in an elevated voice.

Steve got up and handled the kids. I stayed on the couch, typing away in my book (I'm almost at 73,000 words!). I didn't even flinch. I simply could not manage another bedtime. I needed Steve to take care of the kids that night. I needed that night off.

Like I said, most days I manage the load I carry just fine. But, sometimes it's just too much and I've had enough. We've all been there. And what's the best advice for the pilot that faces the brunt of our exhaustion? the need for a break? Just step in and let her take a load off for that moment.

****

Cici is in 2nd grade. We are Catholic. That means her 1st Communion is this year - in May to be exact. My boss invited me to go to a work conference in May...the three days before Cici's 1st Communion.

Miami. Nice! My initial reaction was that I surely wanted to go to the conference. A couple days away may be nice.

But, then I started to look at flights. Due to the conference schedule I would need to take a Friday evening flight after 5-6pm. There are two good options on two different airlines. Both nonstop. One gets in around 23:00 and the other is just after midnight.

Cici's 1st Communion is at 10am on Saturday morning. If I don't make that flight Friday night then the next scheduled flight wouldn't get me in until 11am on Saturday....which would make me miss her entire 1st Communion.

In the back of my head I know flights cancel. I know there are delays. I know crews time out, especially when the day is drawing to a close. I know there are cancellations. I know too much, and it gave me anxiety about missing Cici's very special day.

With no good backup option, I decided to pass on the conference. So be it. There is always going to be another year for a work conference. There won't be another 1st Communion.

****

Totally unrelated to being a pilot wife, but I have to share my new jam. Just discovered it yesterday. Love it! Great beat.




Have a great weekend, y'all!

Friday, December 1, 2017

Holidays-Schmolidaze

I hope you all had a nice Thanksgiving. We had family in town from Wednesday to Sunday. It was busy, but awesome. We also had friends visit for a football game on Saturday, and then for dinner on Sunday. It was a full weekend, but, again, awesome. Steve was home for the entire time, which was so great.

So, here we are in full swing of the holiday season. This is always a super fun time when you are in aviation. I hope you can detect my sarcasm. This year we are fortunate to have Steve home for Thanksgiving and Christmas. But, it certainly hasn't always been that way. We still think he is going to have to work, will that fear ever stop?, but the scheduling gods have been good to us for the last 2 years.

All I can say to my fellow pilot wives out there during this holiday season...drink a lot. It sucks when your lover isn't home for your neighborhood Christmas party, or for the kids school performance, or for your work Christmas party, or on Christmas morning when your little ones run downstairs with their sleepy but excited eyes, or on those quiet nights when there is a crackle to the fire and the soft glow of the trimmed Christmas tree makes you long for your man who is so far away. It sucks. I have no advice as to how to make it better, well aside from drinking away your sadness, since I don't think there is one. Just grin and bear it, and January will come soon enough. Eventually will come the day where he holds holidays off, and you can finally celebrate as a family...on the actual holiday.

Here is a blog post I did a couple years back about what a pilot really wants for Christmas. Worth the read, if you ask me.

****

Since family was in town all last weekend, that meant we were doing a lot of hosting and entertaining and relaxing. There wasn't much time for laundry. Steve was off this past Monday and Tuesday and did a great job of getting the laundry caught up.

On Tuesday night he gently tells me to, "just do one load a night, and that way it won't get all backed up."

I just glared at him. Does he really know how much is on my plate when he is gone?!

"Just one load..." he repeated.

As if. Sometimes it is all I can do to not break down and cry by 7pm. That is certainly not the night to do "just one load."

After I kept my glare, he got my point.

And frankly, I got his point all along. I, too, would LOVE to be able to do a load a night. In a perfect world it makes perfect sense to do so. But, when you child is screaming and is in a bad mood all night, after your son tripped and fell hard in the driveway...oh, and add on basketball practice and Christmas pageant practice, on top of a hard day at work...you get my point.

For what it is worth, I ended up doing tow loads in his absence this week. 

***

Speaking of hard and exhausting days, where I didn't do any laundry, wanna know what time I crawled into bed on Wednesday night?

Yeah, baby! While the kids were getting ready for bed, so was I. After they got into their beds, I locked up the house and made my way into my warm bed, thanks heated mattress pad. Great gift idea, by the way, for you pilots out there. Steve gave it to me a couple years ago. At first I thought it was a horrible gift idea, and questioned the man I married. Well, maybe not that dramatic. But, I have grown to LOVE this thing. Anyway, so I crawled into my warm bed, and searched Netflix. Because I just finished up Schitt's Creek...which is awesome and you have to watch it...it recommended I watched Bachelorette. Great cast. The movie probably didn't win any awards, but it kept me company for the next hour and a half.

There are days that just kick my ass. And the perfect remedy is an early bedtime in a warm bed with a chick-flick.

*****

Not pilot wife related, but woman related. There is so much in the news about sexual harassment, that I can't help but speak up.

So, Matt Lauer has been fired from the Today Show. Good. I'm glad. I like(d) Matt Lauer. In fact, the Today Show is the morning show that I always turn to, and I still will.

Bottom line, I'm glad that the people who have done wrong are now getting what they deserve.

There is a lot of talk about the women in these stories, and why they haven't come forward earlier. Why now? Why didn't they come forward before? I get pissed at that. Like, really pissed. Here's why I get pissed: have you ever been a victim of sexual assault? rape? molestation? hell, even the victim of a man grazing your ass in the middle of Time Square?
If not, be thankful you haven't been a victim. If not, then try your best to listen first and not judge. Understand how hard it is to come forward. Perhaps these women did come forward before and nothing was done. Or, perhaps these women didn't say anything because they couldn't open their hearts. Perhaps now they are ready to open. The statue of limitations in my state, for example, is 20 years. Think about how long that is. Ask a victim how long they kept their silence? Ask them how it was before they were ready to open up.

I stand by the women who are coming forward. I find these women courageous, and I applaud them.  And I hope that the women who are holding their story close to their heart, are able to be set free. Perhaps we are in the era of the woman...and if we are, I'm very proud to be part of it.

Have a great weekend!

Friday, November 24, 2017

Happy Thanksgiving

I don't have a blog post this week...sorry!

Steve has been off all week, so that means my nights have been with us and not me writing. And, we hosted Thanksgiving so there was decent prep needed for that.

I hope you'll had a great Thanksgiving....we sure did.

Cici and Steve started the day with a fun run


eat time



Friday, November 17, 2017

Farts are funny

I went to the eye doctor last week. He was actually a plastic. Turns out we have the same undergraduate alma mater. Too bad he graduated three years after me. Baby. I had a sty, or so I thought, for about 4 weeks. The fucker showed up about a week before our cruise. I did the whole hot compress thing, and I thought that would be okay. Well, day 2 of the cruise I ended up going to the medical clinic. $188 later, the MD put me on some antibiotic which helped a bit.
And by day 4 of the cruise I was able to stop wearing my glasses, and started with my contacts. Good thing because I like sunglasses in sunny places. And it means I can people watch without people noticing. 

Anyway, while getting the appointment underway I was chatting things up with the nurse, or tech, or whatever her title was. She was fun. Her husband is a fireman. He works wonky hours, which means there are plenty of nights were she sleeps at home alone. We both live the life of husbands not being at home every night, so we were relating to one another. We were chuckling about the women who "can't sleep when their husbands is gone." Girl, I do that all the time. As a matter of fact, there are nights when I'm glad he isn't home so I can spread out and watch whatever tv I want. I have grown accustomed to needing my alone time during the week.

And then we got all mushy, and started talking about how their absence truly does make the heart grow fonder. We think it's a good thing to miss your husband. After they're gone, you appreciate their presence home. After they're gone, you find spark upon their return.


****

Raise your hand if you hate that damn lotion at Marriott hotels.

Steve crawled into bed on Friday and I was all, "what hotel did you stay at last night?"
"Need you ask?" he responded, knowing exactly where I was going with the question.
"MARRIOTT!"

I hate that lotion. Always have. Always will.


****

If you haven't read Welcome Home Honey do it. It's funny...and will ring true to pilot wives. Basically, it's all about when your pilot gets home from a trip. Sometimes life is good, and sometimes it sucks. Sometimes you want to jump on him the second he walks through the door, and sometimes you find him almost repulsive.

Steve got home from a trip late Friday night. That night was good. I was expecting crabby, since he flew 4 legs that day. He came home to a quiet house with a fire in the fireplace, a warm dinner, and wine. Saturday, however, wasn't so good. As a matter of fact, it sucked.

I need to state one fact, I was moody. Like really moody. That was truly the root of the problem. Stating that, the morning went to shit around 9am when I recalled that I needed to print out something from the internet. This recollection happened about 2 seconds after Steve shut down the internet (he was moving some things around.)

While Steve and I were "discussing" the internet situation with somewhat raised voices...because of course I was blaming him, and of course he was telling me that I should have remembered before he shut things down, and of course I got more pissy because I can't remember everything.all.the.time and heaven help me the one time I forget something...Cici was chanting, "divorce! Divorce!" I was quick to reminder her that just because there is a disagreement, that doesn't mean one goes for divorce.

The day went to shit from there. Anything from realizing that I had forgotten my wallet while in the parking lot at Target, to the epic fit that Cici threw which cause me to yell at her in such an epic way that it actually made her jump. Not proud of that moment. 

I started to mellow out, thankfully, by Saturday night. The kids had a performance for Polish School, so while they were on stage I drowned everything in three bottles of good Polish beer.

The day wore me out so much that I went to bed the instant we got home. Steve, on the other hand, was starting a fire and pouring a glass a wine. We typically hang together in the evenings, and go to bed together. But not that night. I needed my sleep. And by Sunday morning, I was less "tense" (as Steve had called me).

It's never good to start your pilot's time home with a chip on your shoulder. It just makes the house tense. But, sometimes it just happens.


****


While in church on Sunday morning, Steve's dad called. Obviously Steve didn't answer the call, but he did check the voicemail when we were in the car.

90% of the time you call him, it goes to voicemail. 

Steve's dad left that voicemail...unintentionally. After his comment you could hear some sort of rustling around, and then the called ended. You could tell he was annoyed. But, the fact of the matter is that if you are calling a pilot, it's likely you will get his voicemail.

Steve flies, say, 80 hours a month. There is a good chance those hours are during the day, and not red-eyes. It goes without saying that when Steve is in the air, his phone is in airplane mode. In addition, Steve isn't likely to answer his phone when he is preparing for a flight, which is a good 30+ minutes before. And, he isn't one to talk much while in the crew bus or hotel shuttle bus. And then when he gets to the hotel, he is likely to work out. He doesn't take calls when working out.

And then when he is home he may be mowing the grass, or doing a house project. Or perhaps we are having dinner, or he is playing a game with the kids. These are all times when he is likely to not answer a call because he is in the middle of something, or wants to spend time with family.

See how all this time adds up? Call it occupational hazard.


****


Steve's birthday was this past week. He was working, so we celebrated the day before he left. Dinner, then cake. I have to post this series of pictures, because they are too funny. Steve and the kids were posing for a picture, and Cici farted. I hate the fact that I'm married to a man that finds farts funny...and Cici earns it honestly, so I can't blame her for that.

While deplaning, Steve once farted in the cockpit and the fumes were so bad that when the flight attendant came to open the door Steve directed her to keep it closed. I think the story continues with the FO putting on the oxygen mask to save himself.
smile, someone just farted and is laughing about it

the "scent" hits Steve at this exact moment


This is my life...





Friday, November 10, 2017

Exhaustion

Friday morning I was in Cici's room helping her get dressed for school.

Ben comes in, and examines the random stuff on her dresser. He was just killing time, waiting for me to go downstairs to start breakfast. "Why's the shower running?" Ben asked. Totally serious, and very curious. Throw in a bit of worry, too. To him, anyone needing a shower in the house was present in the room.

"Daddy's home," I answered. I wanted to follow-up with, "remember him?"

"Oh!" and then a big smile appeared on his face. He knew Steve was coming home on Thursday night...hell, he had to help me clean up with me proclaiming that "shit needed picked up since Daddy was coming home."

But, that morning he simply forgot about him. Out of sight, out of mind. This is the life of a kid when Daddy is a pilot.


***

Typically on Friday night the kids have Polish School. Ben was invited to a birthday party last Friday, so I let him skip school and go to the party. This meant that Steve, Cici, and I stayed home and chilled...a rare event for a Friday night. Well, we did make a Costco run earlier in the evening. Why the hell can't you leave that place for less than $200?!

After we got home from Costco, Steve went back to working in the basement, which he had been doing all day when the kids were at school. We are starting a basement remodel, and he is taking the lead on it. We are at the stage now of cleaning out all the shit that we have accumulated for the last 19 years of togetherness.

Speaking of basements, and shit in basement, you have to read: Shit Happens. I know all you pilot wives can relate. It's one of the funniest stories...I'm proud of this one. 

Remember folks, when Steve has a task he is full bore until it's complete. He was very focused on sorting through all our shit. I participated a bit and directed him to "keep" or "toss" or "donate."

By 7:30, I no longer wanted to participate. He got pissy at me. I didn't care. I went upstairs and planted my ass on the chair. I turned the tv on, and cracked open a beer. My week was fucking exhausting. Like, so exhausting that I feel asleep on the couch by 9pm, and slept 11 1/2 hours! I never sleep 11 1/2 hours.


After we got back from the cruise Steve was awesome and did all the laundry. "I know how busy you are during the week, so I want to leave you with empty laundry baskets." Super sweet! What a man.

By the end of the week, those baskets were full of clothes, and then some. Throughout the week I did manage to put a load away, and wash and hang another load. But, I had no more energy in me.

Why, you ask? Because I'm a solo parent when he's gone. Some weeks I'm awesome and can carry the world on my shoulders. Other weeks I suck and feel like a failure.

Let's run down the week:
Monday: work. school. getting the house put back together after vacation. getting ready for Halloween.
Tuesday: work. school. Carving pumpkins. Halloween/trick-or-treat. Get together with friends. Cleaning up decorations.

Wednesday: work. school. Ben's basketball. Buy and putting up fall decorations (we are hosting Thanksgiving this year, so I have to have the house looking good)
Thursday: work. school. Ben took the bus home, when he should have stayed for an after school activity...chaos ensued.  Cici had dance. Clean the house since Steve was coming home.

Throw in the fact that work was crazy busy all week. And that my body was still pissed at me for eating as much sodium I did on the cruise. And that I felt like I was always two steps behind the entire week since I felt like I was playing catch-up from being on the cruise. It was just a long week.

Going back to the laundry note above, when Saturday rolled around the laundry baskets were over-flow-eth. Steve made a comment, "why don't you just do a load a day." Ha! As if I have extra time in the day to add laundry to the list. *sigh*

Sometimes I just don't think he realizes how busy I can be. He made the point in earlier in the week about how busy I am and he was so helpful in getting the laundry done before he left, so I want to think he gets it. But when he follows up with the suggestion of doing a load every night, I think how much he doesn't get it.

Typically when he calls in the evening our conversations are rather sparse.
"How's your evening?"
Good.

"How are the kids?"
Fine. 

I don't typically go into a full play-by-play of our night. I could. I could tell him about the fits that Cici is throwing, or the dog poop that I had to clean off of shoes. But, I don't. I spare him all those details, typically. So, I get how our conversations might showcase a calm house. But, I don't want him to ever get worried about us when he is at home. So, I typically give the impression that all is well. And with that, he probably doesn't realize how crazy/busy things can get.

****

Tuesday night the kids and I didn't have anything planned. Thank the good Lord. It's nice to have a night where we just chill and hang. Around 7pm I was cleaning up after dinner, clearing out school papers, and then I started cleaning the floors. Meanwhile Cici needed to practice her spelling words. I asked her to write down the words down first, so she could familiarize herself again with the words, and then I would quiz her. As I was pushing the dry mop around, Cici was yelling at me for not helping her with the words. "Cici, once you practice the words once, then I will help you..."

She didn't like that answer. I then proceeded to explain to her how things are, "when Daddy is gone, it is all me doing the work of two parents. That means I have to do school work and do housework. Give me a freakin' break."

She didn't get it. Nor will she for a long while. Perhaps I make it looks easy, the solo-parent thing. But one day she will realize just how much work it is to raise kids, solo, week in and week out.


****

I met some girlfriends for happy hour on Wednesday. I needed to be home by 5:30 so that I could get Ben off to basketball practice. On my drive home I called Steve to check-in. He was in Cancun. When I told him I was driving home from happy hour, he grew silent.

"Who's with the kids?"

I found his tone hilarious. It was half worry...no, full worry. Tone is everything.

I had a neighbor gal get the kids off the bus and stay with them. It's all good. The kids like her, and it gives me some freedom to be normal when Steve is gone. That's huge for me. And it's something that I am starting to do more. It's important for me to develop my friendships, especially with women who are smart and funny and make me feel so great to be around.

Steve just needs to get accustomed to me doing things like this. He likes that I do things for myself, it's just that it was very much out of my rhythm to go to happy hour in his absence, hence his tone.


****

I need your suggestions. We are planning on going away this winter, but don't know where. We plan on taking the kids. We have about 5 days. We want somewhere warm. Tell me where you would go.

Have a great weekend y'all!



Friday, November 3, 2017

Cruising

Steve and I discovered cruising probably 14 years ago. We both cruised before that first cruise together. But when it came to our first cruise together, that was really when we got bit by the cruise bug. We booked it about 2 weeks before departure. There was little time to set expectations, so we just went...and had a great time. Like, a super, great, awesome, fabulous time. This is now our 10+ cruise (half on Royal Caribbean, and half on Disney). Times sure have changed from then until now. We used to have sex 2+ times a day while on the cruise...now, we sneak gropes under the covers. We would get day drunk, sleep it off, and then wake up sober and ready for round 2 in the evening. Now, we still get boozy with our unlimited drink packages, but naps are a thing of the past.

Seeing how this blog is about being a pilot wife, I’ll swing it back to the theme at hand. I’ve known Steve since 1999...that is nearly 19 years ago. It wasn’t until this trip that I knew why
Steve wanted to become a pilot.


Steve was in elementary school when he flew on his first flight. He took a family trip to Florida. Ever since that flight he knew he wanted to be a pilot. My interpretation of that trip is that he loved flight so much that he just needed it...the pilot blood began to flow through his veins. 

Not so much. 

Steve flies because he likes travel. “Sitting first class, flying to Paris.” My response was that he didn’t need to be a pilot to fly first class to Paris. He agreed. But, being an airline pilot makes it a hell of a lot easier. It’s a good thing he married a woman who likes to travel as well.

We were sitting on our balcony, beer in hand, overlooking ocean blue waters while discussing this.
Steve mentioned that in retirement he will fly some island hopper. He wasn’t serious. As a matter of fact, he doesn’t think he will fly after retirement. He knows a CA that actually built his own plane. And how about those pilots that are total aviation geeks and go to every air show they can. Steve hasn’t been to an airshow in years. If there are pilots that love to fly and can’t get enough of it, Steve isn’t one of them. He made sure to note that he doesn’t regret his line of work, and enjoys it. But, he made it clear that he doesn’t do what he does because he loves flying. It’s more that he likes the adventure of the destination.

Take one of his good friends, as another example, whose first experience on a flight was that everything was sunny above the clouds. (I would love to make this the title of my book, but it’s already taken.) And, it’s true. Above the clouds is the sun. Seems like an obvious statement, but if you really think about it, it can make you smile. Why not choose an occupation where seeing the sun is nearly guaranteed every time you work.


It happened to be raining when we were on the balcony having this discussion. It was a long day of visiting Atlantis in Nassau, so the kids were watching a movie in the cabin.  
the aquariums (if that is what they are called) were spectacular
Of course Steve went on all the water slides
It's always nice to have those talking moments where you learn more about your partner, even after knowing one another for nearly 19 years. When the rain cleared, Steve’s craving for Heineken on draft began to call. We headed up to Sky Bar. Why the hell not?

Steve and I were about ½ way through our first drink when I struck up a conversation with the solo guy next to me. Craig, from Fort Lauderdale. Turns out he wasn’t a guest on the cruise, but rather for work. He was a contractor. He was working on upgrading the internet system on the ship. Imagine a 7-day cruise as “work”. Nice, right?

Wrong...just another day on the job. He works on cruises and yachts. So, he is often traveling and at sea.

You can’t imaging how much Craig and Steve had in common, anything from feeling rushed to mow the grass and pay the bills in the few hours that you are home between trips. To the fact that you come home from a trip and your baby girl is now walking. Or, how about balancing time at home with your wife and your kids and your friends.

And then we got to talking about the women that marry men that are on the road all the time. The three of us all agreed that, well, we are pretty much awesome. We really are. We are supportive, loving, caring, ingenious, resourceful, capable, independent, selfless...the list could go on. These guys can't be on the road as much as they are, all while having a family at home, without a hard-working woman to care for house and family.

On another evening, Steve and I were enjoying some drinks in the Music Hall. It was a nice venue. During the day we would find our way to the pool table. 
At night Steve and I would find our way to the bar on the second floor. The bartenders were attentive and it was a quiet spot to talk. While sitting there, Steve told me how nice it was to be next to me at a bar. At this point in our life, we don't bar hop too much. So, Steve tends to frequent bars more without me than with me. And when he does go to a bar there is a 50/50 chance he is by himself. When he says stuff like that, it makes me sad. Of course, I love that he still digs me and appreciates my company. But, I hate to think of how alone the road can be for him. He is introverted, so I know he craves his alone time. But, it still makes me sad.

That pretty much wraps up my pilot thoughts from the cruise. Now, onto my other thoughts...

I love people watching. Seriously, perhaps one of my favorite things to do. I observe, and if the person/couple/family strike me so, I can create a whole world around them.

The first person that struck me so was an elderly man who was lounging on his pool chair. I was around the "current pool" where the kids were swimming in the warm water that pushed them around in a circle. 
I had a beer in my hand, of course, as I sat on the pool lounger and settled into the moment. The band was playing Bob Marley, and the elderly man across from me started to groove. His eyes were closed, his hands met in front of his chest, almost as if he was praying, and his longer finders were tapping with the rhythm. His head bobbed. He was feeling it. And it was awesome. His white tube socks were super white, so I knew they were new. His life was probably slow now, but it was like that groove transported him back to the day where he was young. If you follow this blog, I've made it known that I love Jamaica, and I love Jamaican people who seems just so happy and kind. And the music is top of my list. The combination of this awesome man and the great music really made a moment for me. Perhaps he will become a character in my book...

Another couple that spoke to me settled in front of us at the pool deck. It was later in the afternoon, so not too many people we there. The kids were in the large hot tub, which they frequented throughout the cruise. She was probably 25, and he was about the same age. No rings, so I got the sense they were a dating couple on vacation. The other sense I got, pretty much right away, was that they weren't in a good place. She seemed to be bossing him around, "go get towels," or "I need a drink." He got the towel and the drink. They seemed tense. And the whole time I kept asking myself why the hell they were tense about anything. I flash forwarded to when they were to have kids, and I saw more of the bossy behavior. Now, perhaps I'm totally wrong in playing out my story. For what it's worth, Steve took note of the couple as well. But, he thought the woman was mad at the guy because he was drunk. I didn't see him drunk, at all. We both saw the tension. 

I think that if you travel well as a couple, you can make it.

If a cruise stresses you out, add kids. Cici was a bear for a handful of hours each day on the cruise. 
Talk about stress. We know she is spirited, strong-willed, and feisty. But having that combination for hours EACH day, stresses a parent. Thankfully, at the end of the fits when the clouds cleared and Cici got back to her loving and sweet self, we are good. Steve and I are never tense with one another when Cici is throwing a fit. We, meaning Ben too, just try to ride out the fit with as little wake as possible. I get that not everyone has children, so not everyone will have the stress of children. But, if you are tense on a cruise, just you and your partner, perhaps the couple thing just isn't going to work out. Meanwhile, there are couples who can't keep their hands off one another. That's what I'm talking about.


So, there you have it...my thoughts about our cruise. Thanks for your patience with my week off. You'll hear from me again next Friday...back to our regularly scheduled program.


I want the filter from the ship's photographer to follow me around everywhere! 

Friday, October 20, 2017

Run Steve, run!

Steve ran 13.1 this past weekend. He finished about 5 minutes slower than his goal, so he was disappointed. But, nonetheless we are very proud of him.

He started running nearly 10 years ago, when his sister suggested he run a marathon. He set his goal, and did it. Steve is very driven. He is completes tasks...so, if his training program tells him he needs to run xx miles on a certain day, he will. He is also introverted, so I'm pretty sure he likes the quiet space in his head when he is on the road.

I had plans to go to Chicago to visit friends this past weekend, but ultimately I decided to stay in town. Logistically it was just the best thing. And, good thing I did...look at the shirt he wore
"I love my awesome wife"
When I first saw the shirt I was quite surprised to see it. To start, Steve isn't one to be all ooey-gooey-lovey-dovey. He doesn't proclaim his love for me on Facebook, for example. Hell, I don't even get a birthday wish on Facebook. So, I was surprised to see this outward display of love. When I question his reasoning for getting the shirt, he responded with, "because you are awesome."

And, damnit, I am! I'll admit it. I am nothing but supportive when it comes to Steve and his training schedules. I know this is something that he has a strong desire to do. Plus, I know that running is good for him. When I lay my head on his chest and I hear his slow heartbeat, I know his body is fit. That makes me happy...health is wealth. And, it is a great example to our kiddos to lead an active lifestyle. I'll be the first to admit that it is hard to support him, sometimes. He is gone every week for work, and then when he IS home, training runs can keep him away from home even more. But, anytime I feeling not so happy about his runs, I make sure reason takes the forefront and I keep positive.

mile 12. Hurting, but almost done.
****

As the main cook in the house, I always love to hear "Mommy, make this recipe again" and "Mommy, this tastes great!" On Monday, after PSR, I whipped up a super easy recipe that I have to share.


Sour Cream Chicken:
1 pound chicken
1 onion
paprika
chicken bouillon
sour cream
flour

I had chicken breast on hand, and I cut them into bite sized (give or take) pieces. I cooked them in a pan with olive oil, salt, and pepper. I added a bit of water to speed along the cooking process. Once the chicken was nearly done, I added sliced onions to the pan. Once the onions were translucent, I added a bit more water and with about a tablespoon of chicken bouillon.

I put about a cup of sour cream in a bowl, and mixed in about 1 1/2 tablespoons of flour. The flour helps the sour cream to not curdle when you add it to something hot. REMEMBER that!!

I then added the sour cream to the pan with the chicken, incorporated it, and then let it simmer for about 5-10 minutes. Done. And it was really, really good. I served it with potatoes and zucchini. It would be really good with noodles or rice.

It was super easy!


***

That's about all I have in me this week. Sorry. Steve has been home all week, which has been great. But, my evenings have been spent with him, and not writing. Not to mention, we will be on vacation next week, so I have been quite busy getting prepared for that. Because of our travels, I won't be posting a blog next week. I love posting for you guys, but I typically disconnect when I'm away.

Hope you all have a great weekend, and a great next week.

Ciao ciao!

Friday, October 13, 2017

Word of the week: hotel

I'm not saying that I'm the most patient person in the world. I certainly lose my shit from time to time. I like to think, for the most part, that the kids see me as a patient mother.

The kids and I got home from Polish class last Friday around 9:30. My in-laws were visiting, and Daddy was home from his trip, so when we walked through the mudroom the kids got a new burst of energy. They got hyped-up pretty good, and stayed that way for 10+ minutes.

Bare in mind that Steve got home for a 4-day. I like a break when he gets home. It has been me and the kids for the last 4 straight days...I wanted to come in, put my bag down, and let Daddy take over.

Ah, but Daddy was cranky. He had two legs that day, his pairing was full of early mornings, and by Friday night he was tired. When it was time to get the kids calmed down and get upstairs to get ready for bed I wanted to be hands-off. Mama wanted a break. But, Daddy wasn't being the most patient and his voice/demeanor was elevated. You haven't been with the kids for 4 days? How can your patience be thin already? I guess I wasn't going to get a break that night after all...

And this is where it's tough to balance things as a pilot wife. Steve was obviously tired, and since he wasn't home for the last 4 days he was out of our game. The combination could have gone down-hill fast, so I stepped in since I recognized how it could've gone. Perhaps this exact situation is why I have formed into a controlling person.


***

I talked about Steve growing out his mustache, right? Well, it was all for our annual Halloween party which we hosted this past weekend. This year's theme was "favorite sitcom character." Steve went as Lt. Dangle, from Reno 911. I went as Peg Bundy.


Steve was fucking hilarious. He was totally playing the part, and it was awesome. 

The reason I bring all this up in my pilot wife blog is because I dig his aviators, yet he never wears them. He only got them for the costume. 

Unlike some other pilots, Steve doesn't wear his job on his sleeve. He isn't quick to tell people that he is a pilot. In fact, when people ask what he does for a living his typical response is "I work for xxx airlines." And then the person may or may not respond with, "are you a pilot?" That's typically how his discloses his occupation.

He believes there is no need to wear aviators, well, because he is one.

Too bad, because I think he looks hot in them. The aviators, that is...not the mustache. Glad that thing is gone now!


*** 

Steve had a long overnight in a town about 1 1/2 hours away, which is where his side of the family is, give or take. When we saw his schedule for October, with this long overnight, we thought it would be a nice opportunity to meet a new member of the family and celebrate a birthday. And so, after work on Wednesday the kids and I loaded into the car, and trucked down the highway to meet family for dinner. 

During dinner, as the waitress was right behind us, I asked Steve "so, what hotel are you staying in." It occurred to me, immediately after I said it, how bizarre that question must have been for the waitress to overhear. I mean, we are both wearing wedding bands, kids present, extended family present. Typically, families would come for dinner, and then drive back to their respective homes. But, I was saying that Steve was going back to a hotel. I wonder what she thought.




***

Not pilot wife related, but a fun fact for the week: redheads produce their own vitamin D. Something about a gene mutation, or would it be adaptation, stemming from people who lived very far north...where there isn't much sunlight. And, right, vitamin D comes from sunlight. It's amazing how the human body can adapt.  

I mentioned before that I'm having this weird head-spacey thing going on. Second doctor in my books...next onto a cardiologist. My blood work came back normal, aside from the fact that I'm low in Vitamin D. My DO told me the Vitamin D fact...I found that very interesting. And now all you know, too. 

Actually, let's twist this a bit into a pilot wife thing...try scheduling a freakin' MD appointment when you are a working mother whose is married to a travelling man. I had to reschedule a dentist appointment this week...they can't see me until January 30th. I had to find that exact sweet-stop-time when I know I won't piss off my work, and I won't have to find help to watch the kids. Just part of the gig.

***

Think of Steve is weekend. He is running 13.1, which he has been training for all summer. He is super skinny now, which is typical when he trains...if he kept on this track he would weigh less than me! He has been running 7:something splits on some runs, so I think he really wants to PR. I'm sure I'll update via instagram/twitter.

Steve's first marathon. Thank the good Lord he doesn't run full marathons anymore...
that training is just brutal, for the pilot wife, that is.
Of course I have blogged about this topic before: The Marathon Running Pilot 


***

I can't help but comment on this whole Harvey Weinstein thing. Now, this is super far away from the pilot wife stuff, I feel like I need to write about this for a number of reasons. I have been the recipient of inappropriate behavior from a man, to put it mildly. I have a close friend that was raped. This is not okay. Period. The events, which may form into a faded memory for men, can play over-and-over again in the mind of the victims.

Steve was in new hiring training when I asked him to my homecoming dance my senior year in college. This was basically when we started dating (again), and we haven't stopped since. His entire class worked through lunch, so that Steve would catch the flight back home to be my date. I picked him up at the airport around 7pm, on a cool October Friday night. Me, in my red Ann Taylor silk sheath dress. Him, in a navy blue pinstripe suit. This was before 9-11, and I greeted him at the gate.

We danced the night away, and in the process I got drunk as a skunk. Like, super-duper drunk. And Steve, the responsible man he is, drove us home that night, totally sober. He wrestled my 15-year-old 1985 Chevy Celebrity station wagon, with it's busted choke, like a champ. Of course, because if he can freakin' fly an airplane, he can figure out a Chevy.

And you know what happened that night, sexually? NOTHING. I was drunk. He knew better than to take advantage of me. This, folks, is a good man. This, folks, is the man I married. This, folks, is what I/we are raising our son to be. This, folks, this what I/we are raising our daughter to recognize as necessity. And you know what? This isn't hard. It all falls under respect. Have fucking respect for people. Period. And if you have demons in your head that you want to blame any inappropriate actions on, fuck that. Deal with the demons yourself - you don't need to bring others down with you.

I praise all the women who are coming forward. It takes courage.

That's all I'll say about that...

***

Have good weekends, y'all!


Friday, October 6, 2017

Words of the Week: run for it

It's 9:23pm, here on a Wednesday night, and this is the first that I have written in this week's blog. I'm sitting in my bed, with Real Housewives of NJ in the background. I figured if I busted out my chromebook, then I would at least start writing. Sort of like when you don't want to workout, start by putting on your workout clothes. If you are dressed the part, there is a strong chance you will continue and get that workout in.

The real reason that I haven't written much this week is because it's been a shitty week: the tragedy in Las Vegas, my back (degenerated disc) has been flared up, I'm also having some weird head-spacey stuff going on, Steve and I are at odds with one another, I've got some personal drama going on (which is very rare for me...and drama is exhausting), and my love tank is low. Oh, and work has been nuts. I've just not been in the mood to write. Aside from all that I just wrote, it appears I have my shit together. The kids are great, and our evenings aren't racing around but rather slow and easy. It's nice when I don't feel overwhelmed. We are hosting a party this weekend, so the calm nights have allowed me to prepare for that.

Another reason I haven't written much is because there isn't much pilot wife stuff going on this week. Well, I guess the low love tank is pilot wife related. What happens when your period is followed by a daddy/son camp out, which is then followed by a 4-day trip? You guessed it...little physical touch and not much filling of the love tank. There are times, here and there, where our routines are mixed up and this is the prime time for love tanks to go dry. It sucks. But, when he is gone as much as he is, it's inevitable. At least I recognize a low tank, and am comfortable with vocalizing it. And thankfully Steve knows how to respond.

***

Steve overnighted in Seattle on Thursday. He called me while he was waiting for his dinner. He rarely does this. Sometimes I'll talk to him while he is walking to a restaurant, or walking home from one, but rarely while he is waiting for food. It's interesting how these guys form habits, and how us pilot wives are very aware of these habits...and very aware when these habits change. I'm not getting at anything, so don't let your mind go there. I'm sure that Steve was just checking on me due to my shitty week. Or, maybe the internet wasn't entertaining him enough. But, it's funny how I noticed this small change in behavior.

***

As I was editing this post on Thursday evening, the kids were in the shower and getting themselves ready for bed. All the sudden, the smoke alarms start to go off. To note, we have about eight in our house and they all "talk" to one another. If one goes off, then they all do, and it gets loud.

They were chiming for not more than 3 seconds and Ben bolted out the front door. I witnessed the whole thing from our office, which is off the foyer. He was out the front door, and he was coming from upstairs!, in the same time it took for me to barely get out of my chair. Perhaps I should start calling him "Flash."

Cici was quick to follow. She was actually in a shower when the alarms started, and was able to make it downstairs just seconds after Ben. She stalled in the foyer recognizing it was inappropriate to go outside naked. I ran upstairs and got her a towel. By the time I gave Cici a towel the alarms stopped.

The kids wanted to stand on the front sidewalk while I investigated the house and the cause of the alarms. Enter pilot-wife, the keeper of the house when the pilot is gone. Mama's gotta figure shit out. I walked around the house, including the basement, and didn't see any signs of smoke or fire. I, then, reset the alarms. Done.

I praised the kids for their quick response. And I mean quick! Ben was freaked out, and needed a couple hugs to calm him. I also gave him, and Cici, a dose of my anti-anxiety essential oils. That helped, even if it was a placebo effect.

And what does a good mom do when her kids are anxious...take a picture! Poor kiddos. Nothing like getting your adrenaline going before bed.


Wishing you all a good weekend. Our Halloween party is this weekend, so look for some pictures. Steve is going to be fucking hilarious...mustache (eww!) and all.


Friday, September 29, 2017

Word of the Week: Birthday

This past weekend was hot, like 90 degrees hot. Normally it is in the 60-70s around this time of the year, so we made sure to take advantage of the weather. We headed up to the lake, of course. My in-laws have a boat that we us. We invited friends to come up, and by 4:00 we were out on the water. After a stop to fuel up, we headed out onto the lake. Destination: the boaters beach where we anchor out, swim to shore, and spend time enjoying the sand and drinks.

As typical, after about 5 minutes on the lake Steve started to slow up. This is my sign to head to the front of the boat, pull out about 20 feet of anchor line, and get set for Steve to yell to put the anchor in. But, I didn't hear him say that. Rather, he said "the engine just cut out on me." Fan-fucking-tastic.

To note, it was the starboard engine that quit. The port engine was still doing fine. Thank the good Lord for two engines.

Had it just been the four of us, we would have gone back to the dock. But, since we had friends up we kept to our plans. Steve did a bit of troubleshooting, but with no good outcome. He positioned himself, skillfully with just one engine, and we set the anchor. We stayed at the beach for about 2 hours, just chatting and drinking, while the kids played.

I add the drinking part because that keeps me cool. For the record, Steve wasn't drinking. He doesn't when he is driving the boat...safety first. I am not so cool under pressure. Steve is. I can also get anxious about things, and an engine out is something that can certainly raise my anxiety level. This, folks, is where it is nice to be married to a pilot - he's cool under pressure.

The port engine went out last summer (impeller), and Steve kept his cool then, too.


As the sun started to set we decided to head back to the marina. We loaded back into the boat, the port engine started (yeah!) and the starboard engine still did not. Steve got us back into the channel, slowly but steady. She was working hard to get through the water, and I was certain to throw up a couple prayers. We have been stuck out on the lake before (on my Father-in-Law's old boat, which just had one engine...again, the impeller), and I cared not to be stuck out on the lake again.

As we were approaching the marina, our guest asked to help out. He hasn't assisted with docking a boat before, so not only did I have to get detail about docking in general, but I had to add to the situation. Steve is skilled at driving the boat, but he was crippled.

If interested, the reason the boat was crippled, even with one engine, is due to steering. When you are going a decent speed, you can use the steering wheel (is that even what it's called) to steer. But, when you are going slow speeds, you have to use the engines to steer. Since there are two engines on the boat, Steve will work both engines together to get the desired direction. When one engine is out...well, think about paddling a row boat with only one oar.

We were about 3 docks away, coming in slow and steady. No winds. No dock partner. All good. A fellow marina friend yells out "coming in VFR?" Steve responses with the fact that we were down an engine. Marina friend starts walking quickly to the dock, ready to help out.

Steve slowly turned towards the dock. No winds - good. We threw out some lines, and before long we were all tied up. When Cici got off the boat, she yelled out "land, sweet land" and kissed the ground. It wasn't that dramatic, but it was nice to be back at the dock. I share the story because Steve did a great job, and I'm certain it is because of his conditioning for his job. He said his blood pressure wasn't even raised during the whole situation. This made me happy - I like that he is able to keep incredibly cool and calm and in control. What to know what else made me happy? The multiple beers I was drinking to keep my ass calm.

Here we are coming back in. You can see, by lack of water movement on the side,
just how slowly we were going.
***

I turned 39 this week.

Steve was home for my birthday this year. It's always nice when he's home for birthdays. The day had to be typical: work/school, after school activities, and PSR. We then all met at a new BBQ joint for dinner. The evening ended with a proper sweet treat.


There are two things I really don't like about this pilot wife gig: taking the trash out, and locking up the house at night. In my head these are traditional male roles in a house. But, I'm the one stuck doing it when Steve is gone.

Knowing the above, Steve gifted me google home. Now, at night all I have to do is "hey google, turn off the lights." And she listens. Off go the lights. Steve put real thought into this gift, and that makes me happy.

I have to share a google home moment...the kids were getting ready for bed and I made my way downstairs into the kitchen (where she lives) to clean up. I said "hey google, it's my birthday, play me some music."

And wouldn't you know it, Here Comes the Sun, by The Beatles, starts to play. I instantly start to tear up.

You see, this song plays a very important part in my book. There is a death in my book, and this song is what one person plays to another from beyond the grave. As I was trying to maintain my composure, which wasn't very pretty, Steve looked at me curiously.  "This is the song that Victoria plays for Dean all the time." He heard what I said, but he didn't get why I was emotional. You see, these characters are a part of me. I've created them. Their pain is my pain. Their joy is my joy. And that song was a sign...a sign to keep writing.

And that motivation was on the perfect day. It is my goal to have my book finished, including editing, by my 40th birthday. One year - tick tock. Just keep writing...



****

This week was also the week of MD appointments. I was in search of a new PCP, and I think I found her. She is actually the mother of a good friend, but beyond that I really clicked with her. I met her the other afternoon, and she is awesome! As we were getting to know one another she asked how long I have been married. She responded very favorably when I told her 14 years.

I joked that since Steve is an airline pilot it's really like we've only been married for 7 years. She related that to a woman she knows whose husband is a truck driver. The woman presented her marriage to be perfect.
- they enjoy their time together when he is home...check.
- they have a good love life...check
- and when they start to get sick of one another, he is off again...check
- and when he is gone, she gets to do whatever she wants...check
- and just when they start to miss one another, he is back home for the cycle to start again...check

This cycle really can keep things fresh and fun. Generally speaking, you really do miss your husband when he is gone, and you really do enjoy when he is home. Sounds like a great marriage when you lay it out like that.

Wednesday, September 27, 2017

Alone

When I am working on a blog post I constantly have an internal dialogue about the post. I will write in my head while I'm driving, or in the shower, or while taking the dog for a walk. The dialogue will include the blog title, sentences to add, topics to add, ect.

While working on this blog post I had a couple titles swimming around. They included:
Asshole
3-day from hell
I suck at this parenting thing
Alone

I stuck with the Alone title, since I think it really does encompass this past 3-day from hell. I've been doing this mom thing for 10 years now. I've been doing my pilot for 19 years. You would think that I would finally have this gig down. Nope. Not yet.

Let the story begin...

My weeks are routine. Keeping with this routine keeps me sane. Admittedly, there are times when our routine gets tweaked, and sometimes I don't respond well to it. Take Wednesday of this week...it is a busy day at work for me. I post a lot of money, and it takes 3-4 hours to get it all done. That morning my head is down and focused. I'm close to exhausted when I am all said and done. Ah, but the story is just beginning...

If you recall (No Distractions) Cici has been having retinal, or ocular, migraines. She has seen a neurologist, an eye specialist, has had a CT scan, and on Wednesday we were back to the neurologist for a follow-up. Everything is coming out normal, for which we are thankful. Next step is an echo-cardiogram to see if there is any clotting issues...

Anyhoo, so after getting a shit-ton done at work, I had to leave about 30 minutes early to get Cici picked up from school. Then we drove about 40 minutes to the MD. Oh, I should clarify that Steve was working. For future reference, when it comes to stories like this just assume that Steve is gone and it is me doing the solo-parent thing...

The appointment went well, and we were there for only 20 minutes. When we got into the car after the appointment I called Steve to share details. No answer. I figured he was working-out. 

Because of the MD appointment and my desire to not pull Ben out of school early and drag him along, I arranged for him to go home with a friend after school. After the appointment, and a quick stop at White House Black Market (since Ben and his friend were having a good time and wanted to play longer), we picked Ben up.

On the way home, Ben mentioned that he was trading a classmate a classmate 35 tootsie-pops for 200 pokeman cards. So, on the way home we made a detour to the grocery store. We also picked up dinner: sushi for me and Cici, and a baked potato for Ben. Steve called back while I was wrist deep in sushi containers, and while Ben was asking about how many bags of tootsie-pops he should get. Cici was probably whining about something or another. I simply couldn't take his call at that exact moment. But, I called him back on the way home. No answer.

We finally got home around 6:15p. I was tired. I was hungry. I was overstimulate.  I wanted to crawl under a blanket with my sushi and tune out the whole world. But, mom-duty calls. Within 10 minutes we were about to sit down for dinner. I needed a minute to sit down and breathe....

...and then Steve called.

I, reluctantly, picked up the call.

"Hi."
"Hey, what's going on."
"Just about to sit down to dinner."
"Ok, but real quick can you tell me how the appointment went?"
"I called you twice. Why didn't you answer?"
"The first time I was talking to John about the boat. The second time I was eating dinner."
"Then, let me eat dinner. And I will call you back when I am done."

And that was that. Typically I don't get all bitchy at Steve. Typically when he calls I stop what I am doing and take his call. I don't track his schedule, typically. So, when he calls I don't know if he has only 2 minutes to talk or if he is in for the day. But, that night I simply didn't have it in me to talk to him. Hangry totally took over, and because he called the exact second I was walking to the dinner table, and because he admitted that he didn't take my call because he was eating dinner himself (probably with his CA, so I respect that), I owed it to myself to take time for myself.

And that's just the start of the awesome night...

After dinner, I called Steve back. We talked for about 5 minutes or so.

And then Cici had to finish up her homework. She had 4 pages of math work. She completed 2 pages while in the car, but told me she wanted to wait to do the other 2 pages "later." Later had arrived (it's probably 6:45p at this time), and she had to do it.

As she was sitting at the computer, her girlfriend came to the door. She invited Cici to go to the park. "Sorry, but she had to get her homework done."

This made Cici cry for the next 15 minutes. She was upset that she couldn't go, obviously. I had to listen to her crying for 15 minutes. Most of the time it was probably a fake cry - she is into that lately. Cici was also struggling with a math question, and I was doing my best to help her, but she simply wasn't hearing it. She was tapped out, mentally, and the only place we were headed was frustration-town.

It was right around this time when I sent texts to Steve to blow off some steam. I was tired. I was at my threshold of the fake crying. The kids still don't understand that I can't listen to both of them when they are talking at the EXACT SAME TIME! The kitchen was a mess. The dog needed walked. And, it was 1/2 hour away from showers. We were running out of time.

It was one of those nights as a pilot wife where you feel like a failure. It was only day 1 of a fucking 3-day, and I was sucking already.

So, I took to twitter:

Steve responded to my text with "have a beer." And that was all I heard from him. More support would have been nice. A text or call later in the night to check up on me would have been nice. But, I got nothing. This, folks, is what it can be like to be married to a pilot. He's an awesome guy - a great husband and father - but, sometimes you are just so alone when it comes to parenting the kids.

Ben is my balance. As the night progressed he knew he needed to help me out, instead of adding fuel to the fire. He helped me clean up and even helping Cici with her homework. We ended up walking Niko around 7:30. The kids got showers and watched a show as normal and were in bed at their normal time. We all woke up Thursday morning renewed. It was a new day, and I was in a good mood to start the day.

As I was taking a shower, I hear a noise. I peaked out to find that Niko had puked on the rug in front of Steve's sink. Thankfully Niko cleaned it up himself, so I was able to postpone the rug washing until I got home from work.

Despite the puking, I was having a good day. All was well. But, the evening went to shit around 6 when it was time for me to move the rugs from the washer to the dryer. You see, there were towels still in the dryer. And, there were clean clothes bundled into the laundry basket on top of the dryer. So, when I needed to do my work I was held up by the fact that Steve left me more work to do. He is awesome and helps with the laundry, and typically he completes the entire cycle of laundry. But this time around he did not.

I was actually talking to Steve as I was discovering this mess. We are managing the sale of his father's boat, and Steve was talking to me about an offer that was very suspicious. He, obviously, wanted to talk things out, and he certainly was. But, in my head he was repeating himself. Make a decision...continue talking to the guy, or stop talking. No need to talk through different strategies. I am quick to make decisions. Ain't no one got time to hem and haw over things. 

I simply didn't have time to talk about the boat. I was hot - because 87 degrees on September 21st is totally normal - and I was pissed that I had to finish up Steve mess that he left me.

I bit back hard. "Steve, do what you want. Talk to him or not. I don't care. I don't have time for this. I have to go..."

It wasn't my best moment. I was an asshole to the kids on Wednesday, and I was an asshole to Steve on Thursday.

Ah, but the story continues...

I finally cooled off. Literally. I got my ass in the shower around 9, and washed off all the humidity. I poured myself a vodka cocktail and settled into the family room. And then I started texting Steve. Long story short, he was pissed that I bit his head off. I was pissed that I felt alone. I was having a rough couple nights, and I barely heard from him.

Pilots, here me out, sometimes the beautiful woman you have tending to your home and children needs to hear a couple things from you. Tell her she works hard. Tell her she is doing a good job. Ask her how her day was, and if she's having a bad day follow-up with her and ask her how she is doing. Don't take her for granted. Just like you can have a shitty trip, so can we. When that happens, support us. Encourage us. Don't go radio silent. Don't think that we don't need you.

Steve told me he was "giving me space" by not communicating with me. Him not communicating with me made me feel alone.

There is a physical loneliness that comes with being married to a pilot. That's easy for anyone to understand...your man isn't right next to you.

Then you have emotional loneliness, like those times when he leaves for a trip and it seems like the soul is sucked out of the house. Or the time you cry at Christmas mass because holidays are for family, which includes your husband. I have blogged about this before. 

And then there is the loneliness that comes with being a solo-parent. Like, the times where you feel so overwhelmed with your daily tasks that you find a quiet corner in the house and let tears fall down your face. Or the times when you feel like you are failing as a parent, and all you need is a little support and encouragement from the father of your children, but you don't get it. Thankfully it is rare that I have that feeling. But, when you feel it it really rocks you. You do enough things alone when you are married to a pilot...raising his kids alone is the last thing you want to add the list.

I was thankful when the 3-day from hell ended. Some trips are just shitty upon shitty. They happen, we survive, and we then continue to march on through this whack-a-do lifestyle.