Spring Break, Dogs, and an Occupational Hazard

The kids had spring break last week. GUESS WHERE WE WENT?!


We don't travel on spring break. At least we haven't up to this point with the kids. Yes, we do travel with them, but we pull them out of school. Why? Because that's when the flights are open. Traveling to and from Cancun in first class doesn't happen in March...but, it does in January. Let me re-word that...there aren't open seats traveling to and from Cancun in march, therefore we avoid it. And who wants to pay for tickets?!

Steve had a couple days off last week, so he took the kids to his parent's for a night. Meanwhile I boozed it up with a couple friends.

The kids are also involved in a couple day camps, so their week wasn't full of only video games and YouTube videos.

Steve bid for spring break off in 2019, and got it. So, we will actually be traveling next March. But, it won't be anywhere via non-reving. We are thinking about driving to a cruise port, which is totally do-able. Or, I suppose we could buy revenue tickets. Could we actually bring ourselves to do that?


This summer will mark 2 years since we got our awesome dog, Niko. He's a 2 year old labradooble, and he's awesome.

Steve and I got our first dogs, Lexi and Cali, shortly after we moved into our first home. They were both rescue dogs, and were great. They both passed about 2 years ago. We told ourselves that we would pursue another dog after a kitchen remodel and a trip to Europe.

We wanted to keep with the rescue route, since the cause is so great. Steve wanted a "doodle," either a golden or lab. The no-hair thing was a must for him, so we researched a lot.

The kids and I saw a goldendoodle from a rescue group. But, there was just something about him that didn't make me 100% comfortable with the kids. I passed. And then I started to have concern about a rescue with the kids. Not knowing a dog's history scared me. Dogs are animals. I was very mindful of that. With our first dogs, we had years of getting to know them before introducing kids.

After considering other adoption ideas, like adopting a mamma from a breeder after she was done with her puppies, I had the bright idea to look at craigslist. And wouldn't you know it, we found Niko.

He was purchased at a pet store, a sweet little black thing. And then at 5 months, he was pushing 50 pounds. Not to mention this dog NEEDS work. The previous family simply couldn't handle him anymore (size and activity). Enter our family. After a quick meet-and-greet, we took to Niko instantly. He took to us. We re-homed him.

I give you all this background to lead up to my point...the pilot wife and the dog.

When we first got Niko, Steve was all, "this is going to be my dog, I know it." And when I posted things like this when we first got him, I thought it would be that way:

Not so much.

This dog is attached to me. Like, super duper attached to me.

I love it.

I also hate it.

Take Saturday morning, for example. To note, I walk Niko every morning, and most evenings. When I wake up, we walk, then I feed him. That's his routine. So, on Saturday morning Steve was the first out of bed. He let Niko out, then fed him. Niko didn't eat, but rather came back up into my bedroom and stayed next to my bed. He put his paws on the bed to see if I was awake a couple times. I hid under the covers trying to act asleep. The dog would.not.leave.my.side until I got out of bed. Then we went downstairs, and then he proceeded to eat. So much for me sleeping in.

I'm the alpha. Niko is my shadow everywhere I go. Including the bathroom! It's like having a toddler in the house again.

So, I guess this is a warning, of sorts, to pilot wives out there: if you have a dog, chances are he/she will be your shadow, too.

There are times when I get pissy at Steve when it comes to Niko. Because I'm the one running the show when Steve's gone, I feel there are times that I'm taken from granted when Steve's home, and the dog chores stay mine. Sometimes a break is nice. Take the other morning when I was quite hungover, and I finally made my way downstairs around 11am. I asked if Niko had been fed. He hadn't. Steve forgot to feed the dog! Or there are nights when I would like Steve to be the one to walk the dog. But, it ends up being me...again...for whatever reason.

Now, I do have to add that Steve can also be great with Niko. He takes Niko on runs, and will play fetch, and walk him, and take him on trips in the car. Even this morning, I got up a bit late because we were at a basketball game until quite late. Niko, as usual, wanted to get up at 6:40 and put his front paws on my side of the bed. Steve took him outside, and fed him, and let me sleep a bit longer. On their way back up to the bedroom Niko, once again, put his paws on my side of the bed....and Steve had a talking-to with him, "Niko, let her sleep. I will take you on a run later today. But, for now just lay down." And he listened...honest to goodness! He calmed down, went to his dog bed, and stayed there until I woke up.


It seems like Steve has been working a lot lately.

On top of that, we hosted Easter last weekend and family was in town for a couple nights.

On top of that, Steve has been having very early shows and very late returns. This means his work bleeds into his days off a bit. When his "go" is 6am and his alarm is 3am, this means an early bedtime. When he gets home at 00:30, that means he is cranky when he wakes up and pretty much stays that way all day. So, in a way, a 4-day trip seems like a 6-day trip.

Oh, let's add that he will be working 2 Sundays this month, which totally cuts into family time.

Oh, how could I forget...right before Easter both sump pumps failed in our basement. Steve was going to take the kids to the Aquarium, but he was stuck replacing them and cleaning up the mess. His time home was spent working on an urgent project.

Having said all that, it's at times like this where I don't feel like I have a husband. Call it an occupational hazard.

It isn't like we are in a fight or anything. We're actually in a good place. It's just that when your husband is seemingly away more than he is home, you feel detached from him. At times like this you are just living your life and going through the day-to-day stuff on auto-pilot...the time to rekindle your flame will come another day.

This, too, shall pass. We'll get back on track soon enough, I'm sure. That's where this whole pilot thing isn't just a job...it's a lifestyle. It takes a strong relationship to be able to ride these waves. For sure!!


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