The main reason I am okay with it is because we make up for the lost time when he is home. The best way to make up for lost time is to make time for one another...one on one time. Lately, this one-on-one time has been our screened porch at night, after the kids go down. We light some candles (since our backyard is basically pitch black), turn on iTunes (my latest obsessions are Led Zeppelin, Hey Hey What Can I Do and The Lumineers, Ho Hey), and drink some beer.
Steve is the slightly highlighted body sitting across the table.
Last week we sat on the porch every night he was home. It just felt...nice.
When you make up for lost time like this, you talk about all the things that happened in your pilot's absence. Since our kids are so young and growing by leaps and bounds each and every day, there is a lot to talk about. There are so many details in life, and those details can so easily be forgotten to talk about. So, by sitting down with Steve and taking the time to just relax and to just talk gives me the time to bring up all those little details. If I don't share these details about the kids, then Steve would never get the details. That is a lot of home life that could be missed. I don't want that. Even thought Steve is away from the kids 4 days a week, that doesn't mean he can't know the details during his absence.
Another night we were talking airplanes, which is usually a rarity for him. Again, I was sharing a lunch table conversation about a co-worker that had a "near death" flight experience once. He said that the plane went into a "stall" when they were landing. I don't think it really was an aerodynamic stall, and I think my co-worker may have just been tossing that word around. I actually understand a stall, to a certain degree, so I was questioning/challenging both my co-worker and Steve. This lead to Steve talking about one of his experiences. He was telling me that once they passed over a front and before they knew it they were above max altitude. If this is the case, a bit of turbulence could make your stick shaker go off. Of course, they descended and everything turned out to be just fine. I am sure that after that leg I asked Steve "how was your flight?" and I am sure his response was probably "fine." Sitting down during this catch-up time allowed Steve to open up about flight experiences, which is a rare treat for me.
Taking time for one another really keeps you connected with your partner. If a 4-day can disconnect you from your pilot, a simple hour or two conversation can make up for all that lost time. These talks on the porch make me appreciate Steve's presence. It makes me cherish the time we do have together. I have said it before and I will say it again, absence makes the heart grow fonder. Because Steve is gone so much, it makes his time home that much sweeter. Because Steve is gone so much, it forces me to not take his time home for granted.