Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Stinky, sucky, crappy, shitty

Stinky, sucky, crappy, shitty...all words to describe Steve's July work schedule.

His schedule came out on Monday. It sucks.  I was in a funk all day about it.  I was in such a funk about it, I purposefully didn't talk about July plans with family because I just had to process all the shitty-ness.  I am sure Steve was in a funk also, but I didn't notice since he was working and we didn't talk much on the phone.

Why is it shitty, you ask? Well, there are a number of reasons.  Let's list them all out, just to rub salt in the wounds.
- He has 11 days off next month.  For perspective on our norm, he usually has about 14 (give or take) days off a month.  For the non-aviation person, don't say "well, I only have 8 days off a month, must be *so* hard" because I will punch you in the face.  For the aviation person, you know how hard this is.  We will basically not be spending much time with Steve next month. Since my love language is physical touch, and since the person who physically touches me won't be around much, that means my love tank won't be full.  That means I will probably be spending the whole month pissed off since my love tank is on E...all the while Steve feeling helpless since he is only 3,000 miles away on any given day.

- He has his PC.  I don't know why a three day block for a PC makes the entire monthly schedule shitty, but it does.  At least it is at the beginning of the month, so the damn monkey can get off Steve's back and the rest of the month won't be stressful.

- He worked his bid so that he could get a block of days off so we can go to the lake for a couple days.  I like that he will be off for the lake, but it fucked with everything else.  Steve was focused on making the PC and lake block top priority, therefore causing all the other days of the month go to shit.

- EVERY SINGLE PAIRING ENDS WITH  A RED-EYE.  He has six trips next month, and each and every single one ends in a red-eye.  That is right folks, my pilot husband is going to be just a big-ol'-ball of sunshine when he gets home from work....and then again around 7p that night, when he hits the wall.  Times SIX people!  We are going to have SIX rounds of this.  I am sure you can feel the excitement in the air!
     --an off shoot from this: I have NO clue how he is going to continue his marathon training.  He will have to juggle runs (that will take hours at a time) with preparing for red-eyes and coming off red-eyes.  I will not complain about this, I will support him. I will not complain about this, I will support him.  I will not complain about this, I will support him.

- I won't be able to volunteer without having to arrange babysitting.  I may have to take the entire month off from volunteering.  I made a commitment, and I hate that I may have to break it. 

- and last and most disappointing, Steve will be missing CC's birthday.  On CC's birthday, we won't be able to spend that day as a family.  Even video-chatting Steve won't make it better.  Ben and I will be the only two singing Happy Birthday to CC.  Steve should be there.  A father should always be there for a child's birthday.  We will have a party over the weekend for her, and  I am thankful that Steve will be there for that.  But, Steve being gone for CC's actual day just stings. 

Steve did his best to bid a good schedule.  Most times he is a pro at it, and he gets really nice schedules...schedules that we are used to and handle just fine.  Both the kids and I rely on what has been the "normal" work schedule for Steve.  Due to the complexity of the PC and the lake, the computer spit out the worst schedule. 

I will try my hardest to make the most of next month.  Usually I am all rosy and optimistic about things, but I am not too rosy about this.  I am truly not looking forward to next month...at all.  Our whole "normal" will be out of whack.  I know that Steve is not the only pilot that got a shitty schedule in July.  Summer = crap schedules for pilots.  Chances are Steve will get a crappy August schedule too.  He won't have a PC to bid around, which helps.  But, I am still preparing for the worst. 

I have said it plenty of time before: pilot families are an adaptable bunch of people.  We will make do. But, it still sucks.  




17 comments:

  1. I'm sorry. :( My husband swore off facebook this summer because seeing everyone we know post vacation pics bummed him out. Summers are no fun for pilots.

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    1. Summers are no fun. At least we can all be miserable together :)

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  2. Replies
    1. Proficiency check. He is a FO, so he goes to the training department once a year for this. It is simulator time where an instructor puts the pilots to the test and makes sure they are up to par on their abilities and procedures. They have to pass, so there is pressure. I am sure there is much more to it, but this is the broad stroke of it.

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  3. I'm sorry that sucks :( I love the title though that describes dh's lines the last few months, he's been home 2 days since March and he has his PC tomorrow, tis the season I guess...

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    1. tis the season is right...tis the season to want to be spending time with our pilots, but work is keeping them away. Summer is such a let down when schedules suck like this. And like I mentioned to Christina, we will be in misery together :)

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  4. I haven't seen my pilot's schedule yet...I'm nervous now! So sorry about the crap schedule. I agree that I want to punch people when they seem to think that 14 days off each month is a lot. I only get about 8 days off each month but I get to come home every night!

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    1. I wish your pilot the best schedule!!! And if he is gone a lot, maybe you could just focus on house stuff and get a project done per trip. I used to do that before we had kids.

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  5. Sorry to hear about this, especially about CC's birthday. My pilot was not around for my son's first birthday and it still stings when I think about it and it was 6 years ago. Anyway, you will make it work as us wives of pilots always do. Hang in there!

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  6. Yikes! I'm sorry to hear that. I had to "modify" my schedule but have still ended up with two trips that end with redeyes on the West Coast! How does that happen? Let's say I'll be in Anchorage twice in July. Summertime is hard, and I have pretty much read the Constitution to my wife regarding flying in the summer. Basically I work my butt off June, July and August and then take vacation in September for the kids' birthdays. Then back to the grind in October and then we've gotta start thinking about Xmas already! Sheesh. It goes by fast though. Hang in there!

    Read my post here a few years back. I was pissed with my schedule! http://ryanthepilot.blogspot.com/2010/06/walking-on-californias-central-coast.html

    Ryan (ryanthepilot)

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    1. Hey, at least the cool part of being in Anchorage in July is that it is still light at 11:30pm. That must be kind of cool to experience.

      That is a VERY smart idea to vacation in September as a way to recoup!

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  7. Sorry to hear about the not so exciting scheduling this coming month!!! I had to read this one to my boyfriend that is packing as I type getting ready for a interview on Friday to move from instructing to working for a airline.I walked in and said "Babe look what we have to look forward to" Happy Birthday to CC!!

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    1. Yes, this is what you have to look forward to ;-) Good luck with the interview!

      Thanks for CC's birthday wishes!

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  8. Maybe he can line improve those red eyes to something better. I know I became a pro at my husbands bidding and trading software. Not that it guarantees any better than what he was awarded.

    Sometimes being a pilot wife bloooooows

    Sorry for the sucky schedule. I know how you feel. :(

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    1. You know, I haven't dared to get into Steve's bidding software. I think I am too afraid to fuck something up pretty good. Thanks for the empathy!

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  9. Ohhh, I can soooo relate to this!!

    First off, avoid the temptation to blame Steve for it--he has to actually work it, lol!!

    Red Eyes...finally get to avoid most of them. But there's one schedule that's even crueler: Flip-flops! That is, do a red-eye one day, overnight 24 hours, and fly the EARLY MORNING departure the next day. IN-FRICKIN'-SANE!! Tell the company you can't handle it and they'll say, "What's wrong? It's LEGAL!!"

    ...and National Holidays, what's THAT, lol?! And forget Christmas!! I MAY have it off sometime in the NEXT Century!! Worst of all, though, it's so heartbreaking to miss your kid's birthday, esp. when they're so YOUNG! But I can at least offer this: kids quickly adapt to the "norm;" my kids did. Of course we always had to celebrate events on alternate days, but a celebration is a celebration!

    Then again, I've HEARD that a well-placed sick call can do wonders....JUST SAYIN'!!!

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    1. A sick call for something other than being sick? what are you suggesting?! Never! ;-) As for the flip flop, Steve actually had to flight the night he got in from a red-eye. He was at his domacile for like 14 hours, and flew out. It sucked...for both him and me. It was on Christmas Day to boot. It sucked! I blogged about it here: http://comebackdaddy.blogspot.com/2011/12/this-whole-pilot-fatigue-stuff.html

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