I am an oilfield wife and a mother. I spend most nights in my bed with my dog instead of my husband. I have gone to school with my children as their dad for Donuts with Dad days when they were younger. I have played the part of both mother and father to the best of my ability for most of the past twelve years.
I got married to my husband by the Justice of the Peace on his lunch break, took him back to the shop, and then drove the three hour trip back home to see my father one last time before he moved to Utah for work. My husband left for a job that night that kept him away from home for almost three weeks.
I have packed and unpacked our home numerous times (I can’t count them all on one hand) with him being there enough to help load and unload the bulkiest and heaviest of the furniture.
I have searched for, and found, houses and duplexes for us to live in from sometimes as much as six hours away.
My husband’s schedule only has him home for four months out of the year. IF he gets all of his scheduled days off AND takes ALL of his vacation days that’s five months out of the year. He’s worked plenty of his days off instead of coming home. He’s gone years without taking any vacation days, unless we were moving and it didn’t fall on his days off. Even then, he only ever took a few days, no where near the amount of vacation time he had.
I have taken our sick or hurt children to the emergency room on my own. I have spent sleepless nights awake hearing every little noise outside making sure our children are safe.
I have spent countless hours worrying about my husband. I have spent days without talking or texting with him. I have spent weeks and even months without seeing him.
I have postponed many Thanksgivings, Christmases, birthdays, and other special days/holidays so that we celebrate when he is home and doesn’t miss out on more than he already does.
I listen to people complain about how the oilfield is destroying the earth. I hear FAMILY complain about how inconvenient it is for them to deal with the oilfield trash on the roads. I listen to people blame things on the oilfield that are acts of God, not the oilfield. I hear and see how people look down on anyone associated with the oilfield. I have seen firsthand the hurt on my children’s faces when their father’s career choice is talked down upon. I have seen the pride in their faces and the anger in their faces when they talk about what their dad does for a living and when they have people tell their kids not to play with them because of his job.
I have answered the, “Where’s Dad? When’s he coming home? Will he be here for my birthday?” questions many times when they were younger. They’ve learned that you can celebrate birthdays and holidays any time. It’s not about the day, it’s about the people you share it with.
I have traveled to see not only my side of the family but his side, too, without him so that my children know their families. I have attended weddings without him. I have attended funerals without him. I have attended pretty much anything you can think of without him. Hell, I have attended his company picnic without him before.
This is why it pisses me off when I hear how people take their other half for granted. This is why it pisses me off when I listen to people complain that their ex only gets the children every other weekend. This is why it pisses me off when one parent alienates their child from the other parent. This is why it pisses me off when I see people turn up their noses at someone because of their job. This is why it pisses me off when I hear people complain about their other half working late tonight. This is why it pisses me off when I hear people complaining about how damaging the oilfield is.
My husband puts his life on the line day in and day out. My husband puts his blood and sweat into what he does. My husband sacrifices time at home with family to do his job. My husband helps make sure you have fuel to put in your vehicles. My husband helps get the natural gas put so you can have heat in your home in the winter.
I am an oilfield wife.