Need advice from Wives of Slope Workers - Mothering Forums
Forum Jump: 
 
Thread Tools
#1 of 11 Old 06-01-2010, 03:45 AM - Thread Starter
 
isras1's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: Alaska
Posts: 475
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Hi.
I am expecting my first child, due early August. Lately, I have been wondering (and trying not to worry) about what life will be like with a newborn and a husband that's home only half the time. He works a 2 weeks on and 2 weeks off schedule. Plus, we live rather remotely. No neighbors in a 2-mile radius and we drive an ATV/snowmachine for 1 mile from our house to where we park (we can drive our truck in 2 months out of the year). A friend shared with me of how hard it was on her and her young child when her DH worked an odd work schedule (gone more than he was home). She said that her DS knew when dad was leaving and would cry and cry. I cried later when I recalled that conversation and now I am worried. Although, I do so the positive side of this kind of work schedule, he is home for 2 weeks and free to do whatever and be completely there for us.

So, it is sometimes hard work living our chosen lifestyle; hauling water, keeping the woodstove going (we do have back-up heat) during winter, getting in and out of the house in bad weather and just dealing with day-to-day life on my own. Don't get me wrong, I love our lifestyle and I adore our home. I love being home and am rather a hermit. But, I sometimes worry that I may have isolated myself too much and have been trying to remedy that.

Anyway, if you are a slope worker's wife/partner, what kind of advice would you give me? How do you cope?

Bekah (33): Doula and CNA sharing a great life with DH for 10 yrs now, momma to DS Baron (7/10)
isras1 is offline  
#2 of 11 Old 06-01-2010, 09:36 PM
 
liza-s's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: Alaska
Posts: 525
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
I don't have any advice to give since I have not BTDT - but regardless of your situation, life with a newborn is challenging. I think your situation is doable as long as it is your choice and you still enjoy/appreciate it, and you have some ability to reach out for help with you need it. Is there somebody you can call on for help when DH is gone and you just need a break? (Hold the baby while you sleep or shower, just have an adult conversation) I think asking for help is the hard part - whether you live in a city or remotely. Also since you are having a summer baby, you'll have time to figure out the baby stuff before you have to add the complicators of remote winter life.

Good luck,
Liza

Liza - Bird watching, tree hugging, dirt eating, kinda-crunchy momma to my cub (3) and bird (1). treehugger.gifcold.gifdust.gifflower.gif
liza-s is offline  
#3 of 11 Old 06-02-2010, 09:08 AM
 
racie0417's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2008
Posts: 375
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
I haven't done it, but a friend who lives near where I am now (Alabama) has a husband who works oil rigs in Mexico. He does 2 weeks on/2 weeks off. Because of his travel time, he gets more like 11 days home and then is gone for closer to 17 days.

My husband has been deployed for 7 months, so I am used to doin things on my own (and before that he was usually gone 1 week a month and worked 12 hours days when home). Babywearing saved my life. I recommend getting some good wraps and mei tais and learning how to babywear so you can continue on with your life. If you can safely drive your ATV (Have you ever flipped it or had an accident?), I'd wear baby while driving it. It is not recommended, but I would do it given you don't have much choice.

www.thebabywearer.com has wonderful information about baby carriers and recommends Amauti for the cold weather in the artic region. They are pricey but iven how much you are outside, would be a great investment. Google Amauti baby to find someone who makes them.

Michelle, mama to spirited toddler Liam (August 20, 2007) and high needs baby Ben (April 6, 2009)
racie0417 is offline  
#4 of 11 Old 06-03-2010, 04:56 AM - Thread Starter
 
isras1's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: Alaska
Posts: 475
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Thanks for the replies ladies.

I do have some resources, but I find it is hard to get with them, for they have their own busy lives. I don't know any SAHM's and I think that'll be key in creating a more supportive group. I hadn't considered military wives, they definitely know how it is with spouses being gone so much.

I figured that wearing my baby would help, I sure hope he likes to be worn. As for the ATV/snowmachines, I drive like a granny and our road is even (not too bumpy). So, I was planning on wearing our babe while driving to and fro.

Bekah (33): Doula and CNA sharing a great life with DH for 10 yrs now, momma to DS Baron (7/10)
isras1 is offline  
#5 of 11 Old 06-03-2010, 09:34 PM
 
Ak Mom's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2007
Location: Anchorage, AK
Posts: 227
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
My dh works on a boat, gone for 3-5 weeks at a time, home for 2-4 weeks at a time. Honestly, my kids never really seemed to notice he was gone until they got older, and now they are sad when he leaves but they have never cried, not even come close to it. They know he'll be back. And we don't drag it out and I am not showing my sadness. It's just a part of our life, his leaving. And like you said, when he comes home, he's home all the time and we love that part of our lifestyle.

As far as your lifestyle, of course you can do it. As long as you like it and enjoy it, you will continue to like it and enjoy it.

No matter the situation, I think any new mother (at least, most new mothers) needs support. Where are you? Will you be able to get to town once a week or so for a playgroup, visit to the library, etc where you can meet other moms? It wasn't until my husband left for the first time and I got a breast infection that I realized I needed someone else to at least talk to! Then I started going to a weekly playgroup and met a few moms that became really good friends and that really helped me when dh was gone.

I will say, after having kids, I have come to really understand why parents move closer to their families. There is nothing like good family support.

Anyway, you will be fine. Don't worry about it! Just be open to whatever may come.
Ak Mom is offline  
#6 of 11 Old 06-04-2010, 01:23 AM
 
1stimestar's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2005
Location: Fairbanks, Alaska
Posts: 1,716
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
You know, being a new mom is a bit of an anxious period in our lives as it is. Have faith that you will be ok. You know how to live like you are living. Adding a baby into your lifestyle isn't that difficult. As a doula and a cabin dweller myself, I'd be willing to do some post partum work for you but you don't show what area you are in. I normaly stick to birth doula work but have done post partum care and am also a Breastfeeding Educator. Get some supports lined up over the next couple of months and have someone you can call in an emergency.
1stimestar is offline  
#7 of 11 Old 06-07-2010, 12:28 AM
 
alaskaberry's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2006
Location: goldstream valley, Fairbanks AK
Posts: 1,754
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
I did it! In winter. (T was born in Jan '09) I also have a dry cabin. But, I live near town. My SO was working 4 & 2's at the time (he's switched to 3 & 3's, much better!). The worst part was that the kids forgot who he was when they were babies. It still takes T. a couple of days to get comfy in his presence again. The way I cope is keeping busy. For the toddler, you can also make a construction paper chain of X days, take one off every day until your husband comes home. Good luck

SAHM to my wonderful constellationwild.gif 5/2006 & northern light bouncy.gif1/2009 fly-by-nursing1.giffambedsingle2.gifslingboy.gif
alaskaberry is offline  
#8 of 11 Old 06-07-2010, 12:51 AM
 
mtn.mama's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2007
Location: Off the grid, AK
Posts: 3,227
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
BTDT. All of it. If you love what you're doing, and all of you are reasonably healthy, you'll be just fine. Where are you? We should meet up some time. One bushwhacking hermit to another. Good luck!!!

chicken3.gif   We're remote ECing, unschooling, free ranging goat dairy farmers.  

mtn.mama is offline  
#9 of 11 Old 06-22-2010, 09:59 PM
 
onyxravnos's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2006
Location: Fairbanks, Alaska
Posts: 2,619
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
my husband is on a 2 week on / two week off schedule. Personally i really like it. 2 weeks i don't have to worry about his schedule, or making the house look like not a train wreck before he gets home at night etc etc

It's nice having him around, he helps out with children, chores, and it makes it nicer to go to the store with an extra adult to help but i've also found that 2 week break is nice. My homeschooling & children outings get thrown for a loop when he's home. He's very distracting for the little ones

Just make sure you have lots of things for yourself to do. Go to town (?) learn to knit. be silly with and enjoy the baby. get adult time when you can. My LO's sometimes ask where dad is but we just say he is at work and will be home in two weeks. It's always been that way for them so it's not weird its just the way life works at our house.


I didn't see where you are at? did i miss it? There are prob other mamas in your closest town to get together with. if you're near fairbanks we can hang together.

transtichel.gifAk Hippie mama  ribbonpb.gifYamia  DSD '03 blahblah.gif  DS '07 ribboncesarean.gif  DS2 '09  hbac.gif & DS3  uc.jpg '12

homeschool.gifwinner.jpgfamilybed2.gifnovaxnocirc.gifcd.gifgd.gif

 

onyxravnos is offline  
#10 of 11 Old 06-25-2010, 05:46 AM - Thread Starter
 
isras1's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: Alaska
Posts: 475
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Thank you for the advice and encouragement!

I am feeling more confident since I've posted this thread and especially after reading the input from you ladies. Only a month to go and a new journey shall begin for me.


Ak Mom: My DH also used to work on a boat and that schedule was so difficult, so we really do love his new schedule. I do find that my routine is thrown off when he comes home, in a good way, so it'll be interesting to see how that changes with a LO in our lives. I love the paper chain idea, I'll file that away for future use.


1stimestar: I would hire a postpartum doula in a heartbeat if we had one in our town, I hope to provide that service in the future but I've been waiting until I've experienced postpartum to go in that direction. I did find a breastfeeding support group but no play groups yet. We do have a lovely library and story time, so I plan to go to that, just to be around other mommas.


Mtn Mama: I live in Homer, you?


Onyxravnos: I can relate. It so funny of how I get so anxious about getting the house clean right before he comes home, it's a great motivator for me though. I am glad to hear of how well adjusted your children are, if that is how life is for them, it's not a big deal. I sometimes worry more about him than myself at times, he feels left out from life at times. But he sure does make up for it when he is home! Activities, projects, visits from friends, etc.


I guess I'll just have to get out and meet women. I have some great friends but none of them are SAHM or they have much, much older children. So I guess getting out and meeting new ladies will be another aspect of becoming a mother, a new chapter in my life. It's exciting and intimidating at the same time. Again. Thanks ladies

Bekah (33): Doula and CNA sharing a great life with DH for 10 yrs now, momma to DS Baron (7/10)
isras1 is offline  
#11 of 11 Old 06-25-2010, 01:40 PM
 
Ak Mom's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2007
Location: Anchorage, AK
Posts: 227
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
I used to live in Homer too-we moved one year ago-sheesh, almost to the day. I miss it in some ways, and not in other ways.

Check out Birth Two Three-they have a pregnancy group (when enough are available) and then playgroups by age (infant, toddler, etc). Karen, who runs the playgroups, was a great support to me. She is awesome. Tell her I said hi!
Ak Mom is offline  
Reply

Quick Reply
Message:
Drag and Drop File Upload
Drag files here to attach!
Upload Progress: 0
Options

Register Now

In order to be able to post messages on the Mothering Forums forums, you must first register.
Please enter your desired user name, your email address and other required details in the form below.
User Name:
If you do not want to register, fill this field only and the name will be used as user name for your post.
Password
Please enter a password for your user account. Note that passwords are case-sensitive.
Password:
Confirm Password:
Email Address
Please enter a valid email address for yourself.
Email Address:

Log-in

Human Verification

In order to verify that you are a human and not a spam bot, please enter the answer into the following box below based on the instructions contained in the graphic.



User Tag List

Thread Tools
Show Printable Version Show Printable Version
Email this Page Email this Page


Forum Jump: 

Posting Rules  
You may post new threads
You may post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are Off