Thursday, October 03, 2013

our second shift life, part 1

So, I mentioned over the summer that John was unemployed. He did get job, yay!, but it is on the second shift, boo! Groceries, yay!, no help for bedtime crazy hour, boo! mortgage payments, yay!, exhausting solo evenings of chauffeuring, cooking, cleaning, bathing, nursing, reading, singing, threatening, cajoling, disciplining, wailing and gnashing, boo! I should, in theory, have hours to myself to get all kinds of stuff done, yay!, But in reality, by the time the kids are finally asleep I am too tired to do anything but eat and watch Malcolm in the Middle. Boo.

Now, John is a nurse, and I was a nurse too, so we are not exactly 9-5'ers by nature. Neither of us can expect that kind of job, you know? Working weird hours, weekends, holidays,,,it's all part of our reality, always has been. When we first married, I worked 12 hour night shifts and he worked 12 hour days. Then He worked 12 hour days and I worked PRN. The I quit and he worked 12 hour nights. Then 12 hour days again. And now,,,8 hour evenings. He works 3pm to 11pm. And he works much farther away, which means he has to leave around 1:45 and gets home around midnight. He is working five 8 hour shifts a week instead of three 12 hour shifts. I know 8 hour days are the norm for most people, but we were used to those extra days off and it is a big adjustment! But, his days off are the same from week to week (at least they are supposed to be when he is done orienting), and that is something very nice, to be able to plan when your spouse will actually be off of work.

Anyway, that's the sum of my last couple of weeks, trying to find our new normal. I had to sit down, just a couple of weeks into the school year, and re-figure everything, decide what we wanted to be able to do when John is home and what could be done when he is at work. It required some thinking outside the box and all kinds of flexibility for us. I will be back for a part 2, things we are doing to cope. We are finding our rhythm in this, and maybe what we are doing will help someone else, because I was looking for ideas myself two weeks ago!

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