Been battlling illness for 3 days now, so I'm in a contemtious mood.
Careers- A has a career, as a pilot. Prior to that, he had a career as an engineer. I have no career. I don't want one. Once, when I graduated from college, I had dreams, I had aspirations, I was going to make a difference. Then, I had a child and my priorities shifted. I wasn't content to spend hours upon hours working, spending weekends and weekdays working. I downshifted to a job. Something that pays the bills, gives me time off when I need it, doesn't leave me exhausted in the evening and has very little upward mobility. As much as I am rooting for A to climb that ladder to success, I am content to stand at the bottom and cheer him on. I have no regrets that I am an overqualified secretary who has time to stop off at the playground on the way home from school.
Complaining- Why do pilots complain about the lack of commutable routes? Is the company required to build routes that are easy for commuters? Probably not. They do it because they know it helps, but they aren't required to. YOU are the one who chose to live out of base. So deal with your decision and don't complain about the lack of commutable lines month after month. I know commuting is hard, we do it too- and farther than a lot of people. But, we chose to do it so we have no reason to complain. I have compassion for people who have less than ideal situations due to commuting, but only so much.
Consideration- On our last trip, Kidzilla and I met a Captain who was really nice. He invited us to board early, let Kidzilla sit in the cockpit and told him all kinds of stuff. It was really nice of him to take a little time out of his prepwork to do that. Kidzilla told EVERYONE how he got to fly the plane. I had A put a small note in the CA's file to say thanks. A little consideration goes a long way. I've heard of other crew who aren't quite so considerate to others. Althought they seem to be in the minority, there are those who have the "I earned the seniority, so I can tromp all over you" mentality. Stealing trips, taking base trades and taking all the commutable trips when doing TDY (temporary duty at another base, for which you receive extra pay and perks) are some of the things I've heard. I can only hope that Karma comes around to get them in the end. What happened to the Golden Rule? Or just not being a dick?
Comedy- On his last trip, A was with a Captain who was lots of fun. Made the trip that much more fun to be on. At one point, as passengers were boarding, they had a big USA map unfolded and were jokingly mapping out a route to their next destination ("OK, if we follow I40 as far as Tulsa and then turn north..."). I appreciate crews who make the effort to make the trip fun.
Children- I'm curious to hear from other parents on this one. A few weeks ago I posted about the cycle that I go through during A's absences. I'm trying to figure out if Kidzilla goes though his own cycle every time Dad leaves or if its all in my head. I can tell that it's hard for Kidzilla to go from having 100% of Mom's attention to having to share it with A- he tends to interrupt more and is more demanding of my attention when A is home. While he is excited to see A, we think he gets more competitive when A is home. He's only 5, I don't think he does it on purpose. Usually, the day after A leaves, he wants to do something special with just us- go swimming, go out to dinner, that kind of thing where he can be reassured that he still has Mama's attention. I asked his teacher to look out for whether there seem to be patterns of misbehavior at school, but it's too early to tell yet. So tell me- how do your kids react to a parent being gone frequently?
A's coming home for 2 weekends in a row. We're looking forward to getting out and about now that fall is starting and the weather is starting to cool. I just hope that I am feeling better soon. And that next month's bid is as good to us as this month's was.