This blog post is inspired from the fact that my husband has been working night shifts with two different jobs. First it was a medical courier job. He would pick up medical "specimens" as he would call them.
He was being gentle on the subject.
You and I would know it as the pee we put into a cup before being allowed to work a certain job. (This was so they would know we're not drug addicts.) Sometimes it would be other bodily objects. Once he took a foot of someone to the labs he would drop off these specimens! EW!
...actually I like telling people he took a foot. Maybe it's just me but I think it makes a unique job story.
ANYWAY, I got off topic a bit. This is how my journal is on a regular basis. Ha ha.
The second job he just recently got is with Schwans. He arrives at the warehouse anywhere from 8 pm to 12 am and doesn't come back until anywhere from 6 am to 10 am. On his 3rd night he worked from about 9 pm until about 2 pm the next day! If I added that up correctly the poor guy was in a -30 degree freezer off and on for 17 hours straight! It really wars on him and I really want to make his night so much nicer on him. This has been difficult.
Since he comes back when most people wake up I don't see him all day either until he comes back to life around 3 pm to 5 pm later that day. On most nights he works later so I usually can spend some time with him and we can go on dates or visit family still but I can't really pack him a lunch with cute notes inside or anything else while he is at work, working so hard.
I love him and I really appreciate what he does for me. I know it's not easy to be away from each other and not having the time with me or sleeping with me really dampens his mood. Although he tries to be positive and grateful for this job keeping us alive (and he does a fantastic job at not complaining) I know that he HATES it. He hates leaving me vulnerable and knowing I'm bored to death all day waiting for him to wake up.
I try to make the time we do have together meaningful but we don't have a bunch of money and I would also like to do things for him at work. So what did I do? I turned to Google of course!
Certainly I 'm not the only wife or husband with a significant other working grave shifts and wanting to do something for them , am I?
Well I decided that I would write my own based off of the ideas I DID find as well as what I've ended up doing for him.
1. I try and do what I can around the house while he is sleeping so that when he wakes up he can relax and we can enjoy spending time with one another. This includes laundry, taking out the trash, cleaning the apartment, dishes, cleaning the bathroom, going grocery shopping, etc. Granted I'm not perfect so I do what I can but most the time I don't feel like it and watch shows on the internet while he sleeps.
2. When he wakes up I try and make sure to make meals he REALLY likes every once in awhile.
3. I try and make sure we also DO things together that he likes. For example he enjoys playing Halo, kisses, watching movies with me, showering together, and having intimate time together. Luckily for me I don't hate any of those things so it's not much of a challenge for me.
4. I make sure to tell him verbally how much I admire him and love the hard work he is doing. I also make it a point to tell him what he means to me and how lucky I am that he takes such good care of me. Not only does this make him feel like he is doing something important, regardless of how much he enjoys it, but the more in depth I am the more I can focus on what he is doing verses what he isn't. It really puts into perspective for me all that he really goes through so that we can have an income. This, in my opinion, is almost more important than making him feel better about the situation because when I point it out, out loud, I can really act upon my part. I can be more patient if he's having a really bad day and I can contribute a little more because I am notice how effected he is.
5. The other night I decided to try something I thought might not make much of a difference. I saw it on pintrest and remembered it and did it in less than 5 minutes. I took a small piece of paper and wrote that I loved him, missed him, and to be happy. Then I folded it and tucked it into his wallet setting an alarm for an hour into his work schedule to check his wallet. This can work with anything: movie tickets, surprise date night later, and to give him sexy thoughts throughout the day were other suggested things on this site or the "kiss card" from the Dating Divas website, here. The next day when he woke up one of the first things to come out of his mouth was "thanks sweetie. I really needed your note." IT WORKED! I need to follow through with a lot more ideas I've found on pintrest.
6. A few times when he's come home extra late and I am already awake I will make sure I rush at him, hug him, and then explode upon his face with an abundance of kisses. He LOVES when I make a big deal out of coming home. It tells him that I really missed him, I appreciate him, and I'm so happy he's home. :)
Some other things I might try are:
- Write or stick love notes where he can see them, like the bathroom mirror. (Found here.) My hubby always comes home and uses the bathroom. I could plaster a few (or a bunch everywhere) in the bathroom where he can be happy he's come home and about to rest. My friends husband did this to their front door when she got home from work at 7ish in the morning from a grave shift. :)
- Get sidewalk chalk and write a love message on the driveway. (Also found here.) Since we don't have a driveway I could do it on the sidewalk in front of the door. Problem is, I don't know if he'll be looking down to see it even though the sun is out when he comes home.
- Blow up balloons with words you admire about him/her and fill the entry way with them. That way when he gets home he'll have a fun surprise! (Found at the same site as above.)
- Ask my hubby out on a date that weekend with one of the ideas off of the Dating Diva's "Love Calendar" or other date ideas they have on their site (they are AWESOME!) I'm sure he'd love to see that coming home and then working extra hard to get to the weekend.
- Give him more back-rubs and massages to release all the tension in those tired muscles.
- I could pray and read scriptures more with him before he goes to work to continue to uplift him throughout his schedule.