Saturday, September 18, 2010

Shift Change

There are two things that will make a police wife quake in her boots. The first is the THE phone call. You know the one that ends with the wife racing out the door to the hospital. The second is shift change.

Seriously, shift changes are like earthquakes to the police officer's family. While not always bad enough to cause the pictures to fall off the wall, it will at least shake things up a bit and leave you not wanting to open the soda for a few days.

In our 7 1/2 years of marriage, we have had 6 shift changes. Five of those were in the first 4 1/2 years. But, for the last three years, and for all of Snugglebug's life, we have been on the same shift. We have thoroughly enjoyed not having to shake up our little world because to be honest, Snugglebug shakes it up enough by himself.

For the last three years, we have been on 3rd watch. It is not the easiest shift and certainly not the hardest. I can attest to that since we have literally had every possible schedule.

This shift change is from 3rd watch (evenings, 4pm to midnight) to 2nd watch (days, 8am to 4pm). We actually were given a choice this time, which is also unusual. We weighed the pros and cons and decided that it would be nice to have dinner together as a family in the evenings.

Less than a week after making the decision and being notified that the transfer had been accepted, we learned the move would only be temporary. In four months, my hubby will be transferred back to third watch. So, in two weeks we begin the shake-up. We have already started changing schedules and thinking about new routines. And about the time we get used to the new schedule and routines, we will change back to what we have now. How's that for confusing?

With the shift change, we will eat dinner together as a family every night for the first time since Snugglebug's birth and since our first year of marriage. (He was working days when we first married.) For the last three years, we have been on opposite schedules, for the most part and now, we will be on the same schedule. It will be odd.

As it stands now, I am used to eating with just Snugglebug and going through the bedtime routine without help. I've never had someone there to look after Snugglebug while I get dinner on the table or to help with the bedtime routine. I don't really know what I am missing, but after four months of being a family, it will be hard to go back to dinners without hubby and being on opposite ends of the day from one another. Ah, the joy of being a police wife. One never has to worry about boredom.


magpiepygmalion said...

I feel ya on the shift Change causing chaos....I have that all the time with Mr. Bear.....

Araratacres said...

We've never had to live life in a shift changing world, but I have lived several times thru having a husband who works out of town. I think the feelings must be similar, as I would go thru life as a somewhat "single mom" with a gazillion animals to care for and then back to being "the two of us" every couple of weeks. It is certainly not easy, nor is it for the weak of heart(s). hugs to you...we're always here for you.

Cynda Western Felini said...

Thanks, Liz. I remember when we went to a night shift for the first time and you extended an open invitation to me to visit Ararat Acres. Your place has definitely been a place of respite. Thanks for being great friends!