Eighteen years ago, on the very day that Babygirl was born, Hubs began working for a company that would employ him for roughly ten years. An average day for him began with getting up at 5am in order to get to the offices by 5:45 and out on the road by 6am. His day lasted until he got home somewhere in the ballpark of 5pm. This was as close to a normal timetable as we would ever get.
Hubs is an electrician. With this particular company, his job was mainly considered to be industrial. He maintained street lights and airport runways. He made sure that many businesses had operating air conditioners, sump pumps and generators. He made sure that bridges or parking lots were well lit.
Bad weather was a double-edged sword. I would worry about him something terrible. It wasn’t always about the work he was doing, but more often it was the drivers on the road. There were always the idiots who be driving in the snow on bald tires. There were the drunks who wouldn’t see the huge flashing signs that signaled a worker on a cherry-picker fifty feet in the air. Besides these fears, there were the more human worries. Was he warm/cool enough? He was working in the middle of the night after working an eight hour day because of an emergency. He was sick, or he was hurting. It never mattered because he loves his job and his family and he always did what he had to do….and he made some serious bank. With weather like this storm, he was one of the guys that would restore power to your home. He was the guy that made sure hospital generators were working. He made sure that even through the storm, the bridge lights blinked to signal their existence to the airplanes. He would fix the wires felled by trees or ice.
We are currently in the middle of some of the worst weather my area has ever seen. And tonight my husband is not home. He is not with the other company anymore, but he is out there in this mess of snow, wind and freezing temperature. As a side job, he is supervising both of our sons, a nephew and a friend as they handle some snow plowing, blowing and shoveling. This is what they did starting at 4am yesterday. They worked until noon and then came home for food and sleep. Tonight they left at 9pm and they won’t return until roughly 8 am.
This job will make sure that the boys have a paycheck- even though their other jobs are closed this week. This job will make sure that we have money coming in since our own business has been so slow. Luckily for us, the boys enjoy this type of work. Luckily for us, Hubs only has to supervise and not physically exert himself.
But here I sit, at 10:44pm, with the television on to keep me company. My dog is lying next to me and my laptop is…well…on my lap. Hubs doesn’t take trips. He doesn’t go out with friends and stay out until all hours. The only time that I am alone at night like this is when he works. It has been a long, long time since this has happened. Long ago, I loved the quiet. My kids were finally in bed. My laundry was getting finished and the house was cleaned-at least for a few hours. I would sit up to read, watch television, or just to take a long bubble bath with my walkman playing in my ears. I would find something-anything- to occupy myself. I found it so damn hard to sleep without him next to me.
Now, I will watch “Nip/Tuck”. Then I will take my night time meds and include an Motrin PM. I may chat with a west coast friend on Facebook for a bit and then I will turn off the laptop and the light. I’ll put the television on ‘snooze’ and finally relax enough to sleep for the night.
I wonder if this is just another sign that I am at another stage of my life. I am okay with the quiet of the house. I am okay knowing that Babygirl is upstairs sleeping in her own bed, instead of asking her to come in here to keep me company with her soft snores.
Tonight I will stretch out and even sleep diagonally if I want. I can throw my arms out wide, or kick the covers off if I am so inclined.
And I will be happy that he can do the same thing tomorrow when he gets home.