Why can’t you come home?
You never come to the important things?
Why don’t you call more?
How is this life good for your kids?
Can’t you think of anyone else but yourself?
And the list goes on, and on, and on of questions from friends and family members that are astonished with the lifestyle we live.
Let’s not focus on me for a second and focus on my soon to be husband, James. He has lived this life for over 10 years now, has lived on the road most of his adult life. He has missed funerals, birthday parties, and births of loved ones. Does this make him selfish? No, he lives to support his family, he works tirelessly day and night sometimes to be able to give a life to his family. He drags up only to pack up again in a week to go to the next job. This life is not easy, It is one of the hardest lives you can live.
At the present moment…
For over a year now I have been living this life of a pipeliner wife. In the grand scheme of things, it isn’t that long of a journey yet, but I have learned so much and would not trade this life for anything. Who in their right mind would give up living 30 minutes from friends and family, to move across the state in a beautiful 3 bedroom home with in-ground pool and 35 acres, to traveling with her man and staying in a little 2 bedroom apartment?
Raising her hand and jumping up and down!!!
It is FAR easier to travel with him then to stay in a big house all by yourself. My daughter gets to be with a steady father figure instead of a man coming in and out of her life; always leaving for weeks and months on end. She gets to travel around, learn from different parts of this beautiful nation.
People just think its all glits and glam. They think just because us wives get to stay at home that we get to just lay around in our PJs all day, go shopping, and veg out.
Taking care of 2 households is rough, raising kids in tight quarters, making sure they get educated and socialize, waking up early to make you husband breakfast, staying up late to make sure his lunch is packed. Waiting endlessly for a phone call to say he is coming home because its raining. Watching the weather everyday to see if we get a couple more hours with him. Praying for his safety when you know they are winching down a steep mountain side.
Whether we stay at home and our men are away or we travel with him this life is not for the faint of heart. I can remember when we didn’t travel with him. After only getting to spend 2 days with him at home to just turn around kiss him good bye, holding back the tears to help him stay strong, and waving until the I can’t see his tail lights anymore. It is torture, but many women do this.
Now that we travel with him getting to see him every night is a blessing. Transitioning wasn’t easy, but to have Jemma have her dad here everyday, that constant in her life is worth more to me than any heart ache that has come.
And just to clarify…
Home schooling kids, finding a place to bring your kids to school if that is your choice, to doing laundry, preparing dinner, making lunches, make sure all the laundry and chores are done, grocery shopping, taking dogs to the vet, cleaning up poop, paying the bills, running a business and all that it entails is NOT us sitting around drinking coffee watching TV all day and shopping on Amazon.
The one thing that we know more than anything else is our love. When we get to spend time together, we understand those precious moments that we have. No one understands the best of what absence makes the heart grow fonder than us pipeline wives.
The women that live this life are strong, independent, hard working, creative, talented, and courageous. I have met so many of them and they have built this community together that is simply amazing. It is wasn’t for them, and especially the few that I talk to on a regular, I wouldn’t have gotten through some of the tough times. We rally together to support our own, we bring our kids to places so they have friends, it really is an amazing community that comes together to create a family.
To all the women and men that live this life, you are the most amazing people I have ever met. I thank you from the bottom of my heart for the blood, sweat, and tears, and countless hours you put in for your families.